The Agriculture Ministry on Monday reported that it cracked down on 3,166 fisheries crimes last year, about 700 cases fewer than the previous year.
The report said that last year’s crackdowns resulted in evidence being destroyed in 2,978 of the cases. It added that 114 cases resulted in a fine, 74 cases were sent to court and two people were imprisoned.
The ministry noted that last year there were 759 cases fewer than the 3,925 which were recorded in 2017.
The report said that evidence seized and destroyed last year included 1,344,604 meters of fishing nets, 533,396 poles and 382 electric shock and other types of fishing devices.
It added that 72, 967 kilograms of seized fish were also released.
Eng Cheasan, director-general of the Fisheries Administration, could not be reached for comment yesterday.
Leang Seng, Stung Treng provincial agriculture department chief, yesterday said that fishery crimes have decreased because people are more aware of the law after department officials and local authorities worked hard to disseminate information and educate them.
He said officials also advised them to earn a living by growing vegetables or raising animals instead of fishing illegally.
“This year, we will continue to strengthen law enforcement and education activities to improve the management of fishery resources,” Mr Seng said.
Loung Sothorn, the owner of a fishing lot in Kampong Cham province, yesterday said fisheries officials and local authorities have intensified efforts to crack down on crimes.
“In the past, they [the perpetrators] used nets which could catch both big and small fish and there were so many fishery crimes which decimated the fish population,” she said. “But the village and commune authorities now cooperate with the police and fishery department officials to crack down and trace the perpetrators, which has increased fish yields.”