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Fishing boats allegedly owned by Balatan mayor, 2 others, apprehended

LIBON, Albay, September 9, 2016 (Bicol Standard) — Three fishing vessels (pangulong) identified as FB Ruth, FB Erna, and FB Angelou are now in the custody of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) after being apprehended at 8 p.m. last night while allegedly involved in illegal fishing activities.

Mayor Ernesto Bagasbas
(Photo via Marites Timado Falcon)
This was confirmed by Senior Inspector Malu Calubaquib, Information Officer Regional Office 5.

The said vessels are presently docked at Pantao Port here while the investigation is still underway.

Reports say that the apprehension was a joint effort conducted by elements of Pasacao Municipal Police Station and BFAR.

Early this morning, Punong Barangay Jopet Fernandez of Pantao confirmed the information regarding the presence of said fishing vessels.

Furthermore, Fernandez said that the fishing vessels belong to Balatan Municipal Mayor Ernesto Bagasbas, Jun Borja, and Ruth Borja, all of Balatan, Camarines Sur.

Marcelo Villafuerte of the BFAR Quick Response Team also confirmed said information.

This is part of the ongoing intensified campaign against illegal fishing launched by the BFAR and the PNP.

Ragay Gulf, where the fishing vessels were apprehended is a rich fishing ground where illegal fishing vessels reportedly continuously operate.

As of press time, the abovementioned alleged owners of the fishing vessels have not yet been reached for comment by Bicol Standard. (With report from Mark Kevin Arroco)

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