Seized five Sri Lankan fishing vessels handed over to police

An MNDF Coastguard vessel with foreign fishing boat previously caught illegally fishing in the Maldives. (Photo/MNDF)

Five Sri Lankan fishing vessels that were seized by the Coastguard after being caught allegedly fishing in Maldives’ Special Economic Zone (SEZ), have been transported to Male’ City, and handed over to the custody of Maldives Police Service.

The five fishing vessels were brought under Coastguard’s custody during an operation conducted by the second squadron based on a tip provided by a local fishing vessel, ‘Asuruma 03’.

Four of the fishing vessels were seized in the daylight hours of September 18th after being spotted by Coastguard’s patrol craft ‘Nooradheen’ approximately 85 miles off K. Kaashidhoo during a patrol.

The fifth vessel was seized on the night of September 18th after being spotted by Coastguard’s ship ‘Ghaazee’ approximately 77 miles off Lhaviyani Atoll amid patrol.

All five vessels, under Coastguard’s watch, were brought to Male’, and then docked at Dhoonidhoo harbor, on September 20th; ultimately handed over to the police.

MNDF, noting the cooperation by local fishermen in the Coastguard’s efforts to ensure the security of Maldivian territories, extended gratitude.