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Old 07-14-2003
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REAL PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN (AND A BOYCOTT)

The British Virgin Islands Government seized a boat in a marlin tournament in June and held the captain for a day or so before letting he and his crew go. They want $500,000.00 for fishing BVI waters without a license. They did the same thing with a Puerto Rican family this past weekend. The first boat is worth around $200K, the second over $700K. There''s been a "gentleman''s agreement" for years between the BVI and USVI regarding this fishing thing. Now they''re simply trying to shanghai the fishing charter boat industry the same way they took the sail charter industry. These seizure "events" took place over 20 miles offshore. For my part, I''m simply staying away from the BVI until that greedy little government yields its asininity. Culebra and Vieques are fine with me. BVIslanders DON''T get hassled when fishing US waters. When traveling in their own boats, they often skip clearing in in St. John on their way to Red Hook and K-Mart. The BVI has made it clear that they want any and all charter fishing boats to be based out of the BVI. Getting a "license" to fish from them is a tortuous ordeal, if you can get it at all, but these people are charged with fishing without a license. Oh yeah, the fine is $500,000.00 and the boats are forfeited. Talk about Pirates of the Caribbean. KW
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