Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Agents cited two men and arrested a third for allegedly using oversized shrimp trawls inside state waters on Aug. 21.
Agents observed a 51-foot commercial shrimping vessel named "My Mistress" trawling in Cote Blanche Bay. The agents then conducted a vessel stop to check the fishermen's licenses and gear for compliance with state shrimping regulations.
When the agents boarded the vessel, they discovered the two trawls being used exceeded the 25-foot maximum size per trawl for the area. The agents identified the captain of the vessel as Ricky Dejean, 48, of Chalmette. During the course of the stop, Dejean became combative and had to be physically restrained and placed under arrest. Two deckhands, Carlton Dehart, 50, and Woodrow Doles Jr., 34, both of Houma, were issued citations for the illegal nets, but were not arrested.
Dejean was transported to the St. Mary Parish jail where he was booked for using oversized trawls, resisting an officer and intentional littering.
The two shrimp trawls and 2,400 pounds of shrimp were seized. The nets will be held as evidence in this case, and the shrimp were sold to a local seafood dock at fair market value. The proceeds from the sale will be held pending disposition of the case.
The penalty for trawling inside waters with oversized trawls is a fine between $400-$750, or jail time up to 120 days, or both plus court costs. Resisting an officer carries a fine of not more than $500, or jail time up to six months or both. The penalties for intentional littering are fines up to $250 and eight hours of community service.
Agents participating in this case were Sgts. Winston Michel and Mitch Darby, and Sr. Agents Jason Romero, Scott Dupre, Donnie Bozeman and David Boudreaux.
For more information, contact Lt. Col. Keith LaCaze at 225-765-2985 or firstname.lastname@example.org.