Seychelles detains Sri Lankan boat for alleged illegal fishing

Photo: Seychelles People's Defence Forces

Authorities in Seychelles have seized a Sri Lankan vessel and arrested its crew on suspicion of illegal fishing.

The suspect vessel, later identified by the name Sampath, was sighted by a Seychelles Air Force aircraft east of Denis Island on Tuesday, April 14.

The Seychelles Coast Guard vessel Le Vigilant was then directed to intercept and escort the fishing boat to Port Victoria.

Sampath is currently anchored off Port Victoria under coast guard custody. The crew of six are still on board the vessel under quarantine as a precautionary measure in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Local officials have also begun preparing the filing of charges of illegal fishing against the Sri Lankan sailors.

Sampath is the third Sri Lankan-flagged vessel to be seized by the Seychelles Coast Guard since the beginning of the year.

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