Siem Reap province’s Kralanh district police on Tuesday detained 15 villagers who were using illegal fishing equipment.
According to a district police report, officers detained the villagers during a crackdown on illegal fishing in Sen Sok commune, in which they also confiscated illegal equipment, including 10 car batteries used for electro-fishing.
Kralanh district police chief Chi Beng Chun said: “We didn’t arrest or fine them, we just called them in for questioning and education, and then made them sign a contract not to use illegal fishing methods in the future.”
“After they were advised and educated, we allowed them to go back to their homes because they it was the first time we caught them,” Mr Beng Chun added. “If they commit the same crime again, we will arrest them to be jailed.”
The government has repeatedly issued warnings against illegal fishing, going so far as to threaten officials with being fired should illegal fishing be found in their patrol areas.
At the beginning of this year, Interior Minister Sar Kheng ordered government task forces to increase enforcement to stop illegal fishing on the Tonle Sap by going after the ringleaders.