By GW Rastopsoff
In announcement made Friday, U.S. Attorney Karen Loeffler reported that State of Washington resident, 54-year-old Steven Carr was indicted by a Grand Jury in Anchorage for making false records under Fish and Wildlife laws and making false material statements to a Federal government agency.
The indictment states that as the owner and operator of the F/V Sea Mac out of Kodiak, Alaska, in 2008, Carr held permits allowing him to fish in the entry-level Pockfish Pilot Program.
It was in early 2008, according to the indictment, that Carr made four trips to Federal Statistical Area 630, his permits did not allow him to fish that area. During those fishing trips, Carr caught 761,421 pounds of Pacific Ocean Perch. He sold those fish for over $120,000 according to documents.
In order to cover up the illegal fishing it is alleged that Carr violated the Lacey Act by reporting his catch in his Daily Fishing Logs as coming from Area 640. Area 640 is located further from his homeport of Kodiak.
The maximum penalty for violating the Lacey Act, which makes it illegal to make a false record related to fish, wildlife or plants valued over $350.00 and transported in interstate or foreign commerce is up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The maximum penalty for making a material false statement to a government agency is also up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
The investigation into the case was done by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Office of Law Enforcement.