Live groupers can be seen inside a holder filled with seawater on the boat that is supposed to transport them to Coron in this image from the PCSDS. | Photo from Palawan Council for Sustainable Development Staff

Environmental authorities in Palawan have intercepted the illegal shipment of 171 pieces of live grouper fish species—leopard coral trout (suno), red cod, and brown marbled grouper—in Taytay town, northern Palawan.

The illegal shipment was intercepted on October 21 through a joint operation conducted in Sitio Dinet and Sitio Calampisao, Barangay Casian, Taytay municipality, personnel from the Palawan Council for Sustainable Development Staff-Wildlife Trafficking Monitoring Unit (PCSDS-WTMU), Taytay Municipal Agriculture Office (MAO), and Taytay Municipal Police Station (MPS).

The shipment was discovered after a concerned citizen called Taytay MAO that then relayed the information to PCSDS-WTMU). PCSDS said in a statement it released that the individuals have been constantly shipping live fish from the area to Coron town without going through proper channels and without necessary permits.

After inspection, the individuals in charge of the boat who were unable to produce the necessary documents were taken into custody by the police while the fish were returned to the water.

“Pinaaalahanan ng PCSDS ang publiko na ang anumang labag sa batas at ilegal na pagtataglay ng wildlife species, flora man or fauna, ay mahigpit na ipinagbabawal at may karampatang kaparusahan sa ilalim ng Republic Act No. 9147 o Wildlife Resources Conservation and Protection Act,” the PCSDS said.

Charges for violation of the said act are now being prepared against the unnamed suspects.

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