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Action taken against Spanish fishermen

Library Image: Spanish Fishing boats

A Spanish fishing vessel was intercepted and reported for using a prohibited trammel net, before being made to leave British Gibraltar waters in an incident which drew the intervention of the Guardia Civil and the Royal Navy yesterday.

The UK Government will lodge the usual protest over the presence of the two Guardia Civil launches within Gibraltar waters but a Gibraltar Government spokesman said contact with the Guardia Civil was “cordial at all times”.

This comes after a Spanish fishing vessel, Alejandra, was stopped and reported for process for using the trammel net by a combination of Gibraltar law enforcement agencies including the Environmental Agency and the Royal Gibraltar Police.

But during the interception two Guardia Civil launches arrived on the scene.

This in turn prompted the presence of Royal Navy vessel HMS Scimitar.

A Gibraltar Government spokesman said: “Contact with the Guardia Civil was cordial at all times and they left British Gibraltar Territorial Waters, escorted by the Royal Navy.”

“The fact that the Spanish fishing vessel in question was reported this morning and made to leave BGTW shows that action is being taken against Spanish fishermen,” the spokesman added.

The Foreign Office confirmed that the incident took place and that a formal protest will be lodged.

Additionally, both the RGP and the Government confirmed that the Spanish fishing vessel, Alejandra, had been spotted fishing with the prohibited trammel net within Gibraltar waters.

Having planned an operation the boat was intercepted by the Environmental Agency’s Storm Petrel vessel, assisted by the RGP.

The necessary documentation was obtained and the skipper of the vessel was reported.

The case will be processed through the courts.

Pic from archives