Compliance targeting of poaching and black market activities
In the Budget of 2005 the Ministry of Fisheries was allocated additional funding to target poaching and black market activities particularly in the paua and rock lobster fisheries. Analysis has shown that poaching and black market activities can severally undermine fisheries sustainability, the property rights of legitimate commercial fishers and impact on customary and recreational fishers. In some areas paua stocks are under severe threat from poachers with organised crime rings being increasingly involved.
Fisheries Compliance will increase its analytical and investigative capacity and will implement a number of initiatives. These include the development of a special tactics team able to undertake covert operations, train and work with other agencies such as Customs and Aviation Security staff at airports and ports and trial a detector dog programme with Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry. A multi-agency approach will target organised crime to apprehend offenders and stem the illegal seafood trade. Deterrent penalties will be sought from the courts for those apprehended and successfully prosecuted.