Turtles confiscated and released
September 6, 2012 1:05 am
The Fisheries Department today released 3 turtles that were confiscated on the island of Qoma in Tailevu.
It is understood villagers captured the turtles to be sold.
Fisheries officers paid a visit to Qoma Island after receiving a tip-off from an anonymous caller.
Upon arrival, they found a total of six turtles.
After confiscating three, officers say they returned to find the others missing, and villagers had started getting confrontational.
The three turtles were then brought to the fisheries office in Nausori where they were tagged and later released at the Nasese foreshore.
The penalties for catching turtles which are nearing extinction are a $20, 000 fine, or five years imprisonment.
Authorities are now warning the public to refrain from capturing turtles as those caught will be dealt with.
In this particular case, the matter has been reported to police.