Responsible Fisheries Management

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You Can Help Safeguard the Future of Menhaden, the Most Important Fish in the Sea
by Megan Herzog

Commonly hailed as “the most important fish in the sea,” Atlantic menhaden could soon be managed a bit differently, as the body that regulates the species hosts an important discussion next month. The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC) will meet November 13-14 with a historic opportunity to solidify the importance of menhaden’s role in…

Press Releases
Carlos Rafael’s Fish Fraud Leads to Forfeiture of Vessels, Permits

“Mr. Rafael’s crimes put the health of our fisheries directly in harm’s way, and today’s order helps ensure that he pays a price for that corruption,” said CLF attorney Megan Herzog. “Though this amounts to just a small slice of Mr. Rafael’s assets, it sends a signal that anyone who crosses the line will be held criminally accountable. By reinvesting proceeds associated with this case into stronger monitoring and redistributing Mr. Rafael’s forfeited quota among the fishermen harmed by his egregious crimes, we can begin to turn the page on this dark chapter in New England’s fisheries.”

Press Releases
Carlos Rafael Sentence Shows Zero Tolerance for Fish Fraud

“The sentence imposed by Judge Young today sends a strong message that systemic abuse of our fishery resources will not be tolerated,” said CLF attorney Megan Herzog. “While others played by the rules, Mr. Rafael showed brazen disregard for fishermen, their families, and the health of our ocean environment. Going forward, it is critical that we implement stronger monitoring and enforcement at sea in order to ensure New England’s fishing industry operates on a level playing field.”

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Who Owns Downeast Maine’s Seaweed? 
by Sean Mahoney

If you’ve spent any time along the Downeast Maine coast, then you’ve encountered rockweed. The green-brown seaweed known officially as Ascophyllum nodosum is ubiquitous here. At low tide, it carpets the rocky coastline and provides a refuge from the heat or the cold for a variety of shellfish and crustaceans, including juvenile lobsters, crabs, mussels,…

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CLF Urges Court to Impose Significant Penalties in Carlos Rafael Case
by Megan Herzog

 Summary: On March 30, 2017, New Bedford-based fishing magnate Carlos Rafael pled guilty to 28 criminal counts against him, including conspiracy to evade federal fishing quotas and profit from the sale of misreported fish, and falsified reporting to the federal government. Rafael’s egregious crimes inflicted severe damage within New England’s fishing community, which has rippled…

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Commerce Department Sets Dangerous Precedent in Overrule of Fishery Commission
by Megan Herzog

President Trump’s Secretary of Commerce, Wilbur Ross, is making waves in fisheries management—and setting a dangerous precedent that may undermine future efforts to protect vulnerable fish stocks in the Northeast. Earlier this month, Secretary Ross took the unprecedented action of overruling a fisheries management action made by the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission. The Commission…