crime

Japanese fishing boat owners charged in Hawaii with helping smuggle shark fins

37 Comments
By Jennifer Sinco Kelleher

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37 Comments
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Disgusting.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

That picture, literally says it all!

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Sharks are all but gone. After 400 million years keeping the ocean food chain balanced we have managed to wipe them out in about 40 years. Once they are gone we are gone as far as I can see. Once the oceans die we die. Is very rare to catch fishermen like this so the book should be thrown at them. 5 days in prison? They will all risk that for the big money involved

16 ( +16 / -0 )

Japanese do not eat shark soups. They are exported to China. They are purchased at high prices. There is a rumor yakuzas are involved in the trade.

8 ( +17 / -9 )

Correction: shark fin soups

2 ( +8 / -6 )

Asahi Shinbun Dec. 15 carried a book review on "Fish and Yakuza" written by Tomohiko Suzuki. Organized poaching of "awabi" abalone and "namako" sea cucumbers are widely done near the coast of Japan and the Japanese government changed the law recently and is applying a heavier punishment. High quality Japanese dried abalone and dried namako are popular in China and traded at high prices. Shark fins of Sanriku are famous and exported to China largely. The book also refers to untransparent trade of unagi eels which are consumed largely in Japan.

8 ( +11 / -3 )

"It's the Chinese' fault for wanting to buy it, not those Japanese fishermen!"

-13 ( +6 / -19 )

they were for scientific research...

7 ( +17 / -10 )

Released deported and we're still trying to take some fins home? Stupidest think I've heard.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Chop one hand off. That’ll send a clear message.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Jail them all. The captain definitely knew about it, and probably stood to make a major profit. Japanese LOVE shark fin soup and don't care one wit where it comes from. After pleading guilty they still pull this. Instead of a heroes welcome back home, lock them up over there.

-10 ( +8 / -18 )

rickyToday  09:25 am JST

“Released deported and we're still trying to take some fins home? Stupidest think I've heard.”

I believe you have that backwards.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Released deported and we're still trying to take some fins home? Stupidest think I've heard

My guess is the Indonesians were just labour, they aren't  big fish so to speak. They likely thought that they had better come home with something rather than face their bosses with no fins in tow...………..

Or like you said just dumber than dumb, hopefully some of the higher ups will get fined/jailed!

4 ( +4 / -0 )

The Japanese crew members would have to be extremely incompetent if they didn't know that so many sharks were being processed on their ship. They are totally lying! They will try to blame it all on the foreigners.

The indonesian crew was stupid again; they figured that they wouldn't get paid by the Japanese company, so they tried to take some fins home as a severance package.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Brutal that they cut the fin off and throw the shark back into the water like that. The people involved should be charged tried and then there should be some very public punishment to try to deter this action in the future.

Japanese LOVE shark fin soup 

Huh? Living in Japan for 2 decades I have not noticed that at all

12 ( +15 / -3 )

No, you are very wrong. Yes Japanese people eat shark fin soup by ordering it in a Chinese restaurant, (中華)of which there are literally hundreds of thousands in Japan. Shark Fin soup is not part of Japanese cuisine. It is also found in only the upscale Chinese restaurants because of cost.

i don't think the point was whether shark fin soup is a part of what is considered traditional Japanese cuisine.

Japanese people eat it. In restaurants in Japan.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Huh? Living in Japan for 2 decades I have not noticed that at all

Seriously? Fukahire is really easy to find (at least in Tokyo)

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

I am not saying that it is hard to find (it is available) but I have never seen any Japanese claim a love for it

3 ( +8 / -5 )

I notice the photo is of fins seized from the boat, not the ones from the luggage of the Indonesian crew members heading home by plane. Does the nearly 1000 figure refer to the ones in the luggage or the ones still on the boat? What was the plan for the ones still on the boat?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

What was the plan for the ones still on the boat?

It seems the fishing company supplements its income through illegal trade like other dodgy companies in Japan. We have previously talked about the gold, ivory trade, abalone, eel and etc....on here. Quite often shady Japanese companies are doing busy with Chinese black markets because they are usually the largest consumer of these items in Asia. As China economy grows their consumption of resources will be insatiable strictly by the numbers.

If African countries are smart, they will watch their backs as China makes inroads into their countries. They too will see their resources depleted and possibly re-colonized if they are not careful. There has been a spike in the ivory trade and oil/fishing rights are being acquired throughout Africa.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

It seems very unlikely that so many shark fins could be smuggled onto a boat without the captain’s knowledge. They got caught this time, but it would be important to know how long this smuggling route has been in operation.

I’ve seen shark fin soup on the menu in many Chinese restaurants in Japan, and not just in the upscale ones. In fact, it’s on he menu at my local Chinese restaurant.

Shark finning is the most wasteful and environmentally damaging of all fishing practices. The killing of so many predators is disastrous for marine ecosystems. I really don’t think their penalties are severe enough.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

I go to supermarkets sometimes, but never seen shark fins there. It seems most Japanese do eat shark fin soup at home but go to Chinese restaurants once in a while and that soup must be good but a kinda expensive.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

correction:

It seems most Japanese do NOT eat shark fin soup at home but go to Chinese restaurants once in a while and that soup must be good but a kinda expensive.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

I guess many of the JT posters never been to 中華街 restaurants, like the one in Yokohama? Why would you be able to eat フカヒレthere is there is no demand for it???

1 ( +6 / -5 )

If the judge is not willing to throw the book at them, or maybe throw them to the sharks, this is simply going to continue.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

Prosecutors say the fishermen harvested fins from sharks that were still alive, then discarded their carcasses into the ocean.

The greed & destructiveness of humans is staggering. And the Japanese are up there with the worst of them.

No, you are very wrong. Yes Japanese people eat shark fin soup by ordering it in a Chinese restaurant

I don't know where to begin with this nonsense, but I guess you are smart enough to work it out yourself.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

"It's the Chinese' fault for wanting to buy it, not those Japanese fishermen!"

That is the kind of comment one normally expects from a 12 year old.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

because Japanese are law abiding people

4 ( +5 / -1 )

The boat was fishing tuna and sharks were got caught in the net together with tuna. For them, sharks are valueless and usually they throw them away into the ocean. But coming to know that the fins of sharks have some values, the Indonesian crews cut fins before they threw the sharks away into the ocean. The captain allowed Indonesian crews take fins home so that they can make some money from the fins. They had to do it because their salaries very small. This may not be the first time they did.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

The boat was fishing tuna and sharks were got caught in the net together with tuna.

So they were out catching tuna, but just happened to accidentally catch a thousand sharks instead? Sounds legit.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

wow, the Japanese and Indonesian are caught smuggling shark fins,

but it had to be the Chinese fault.

Most of the upscale Chinese restaurants owned by Japanese with Japanese chefs offers Shark Fins.

And the Japanese are rejecting shark fins? I beg to differ.

http://s.kakaku.com/tv/channel=4/programID=116/episodeID=1008564/

3 ( +5 / -2 )

okyo-EngrToday  10:32 am JST

”I have never seen any Japanese claim a love for it”

I know many Japanese women who really hanker after it because of the collagen, which they think will give them beautiful skin. They seem to have no compunction about eating it either but are most often not able to often because of the cost.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

"It's the Chinese' fault for wanting to buy it, not those Japanese fishermen!"

Just like with drugs. It's all the addict's fault, not the drug maker/dealer's fault...

5 ( +7 / -2 )

IF my memory serves me right, once you have removed the fins from a shark it has no way of swimming and stabilising its swim, or motion, so the end result is it sinks to the bottom of the ocean unable to swim correctly, not only is it a great waste, but its blinking cruel.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

I want to KNOW where the HELL these guys got RE-SUPPLIED with shark fins on their way out of Japan...……….

This story is pretty nuts!!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The 10 fishermen pleaded guilty Friday to a lesser, misdemeanor charge of knowingly attempting to export shark fins, court records show. A judge sentenced them to the five days they already served in jail.

Not much of a deterrent.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

@Reckless, your right there, it should be 5 years, 5 days is no deterrent especially when they can rack up some big bucks, this last hall was worth in the region of $58,000.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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