(File photo)

The 2nd Special Operations Unit-Maritime Group (2nd SOU-MG) reported this week the arrest of a total of 40 individuals in separate incidents of illegal fishing during a campaign they launched from July 25 to 30.

Police Lieutenant Aldin Brogarolas, operations officer of the 2nd SOU-MG, said the number of arrest in five days indicates that illegal fishing is still rampant in Palawan.

“Prevailing pa rin ang violation sa fishery law, ‘yong paggamit ng dynamite and cyanide, mostly sa southern Palawan,” Brogarolas said.

He said 14 of their patrol operations led to the arrest of some 40 individuals.

He added that they also arrested violators of Provincial Ordinance No. 1643 which prohibits the use of compressors.

“Delikado ito sa kalusugan ng ating mangingisda pero marami pa rin ang gumagamit. Maliban dyan nakahuli rin tayo ng violators ng Forestry Code, mga illegal na namumutol ng kahoy,” he said.

In addition to this, he said they have launched focused police operations to eliminate illegal fishing activities in the province.

Earlier, Oceana Philippines, an international organization dedicated to protecting and restoring Philippine oceans, reported that Puerto Princesa City and 13 towns in Palawan are included in their Top 50 list of areas whose municipal waters are being violated by the entry of large commercial fishing vessels.