CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Coast Guard law enforcement crews detected and interdicted two Mexican lancha boat crews engaged in illegal fishing in federal waters off southern Texas.
Coast Guard crews stopped a lancha with four Mexican fishermen engaged in illegal fishing Thursday morning. The lancha had 20 sharks totaling 157 pounds aboard the vessel. A second lancha with three Mexican fishermen was stopped Oct. 27, 2018, with two Amberjack fish weighing 67 pounds. The equipment and fishermen from both lanchas were detained and transferred to border enforcement agents for processing.
A lancha is a Mexican fishing boat approximately 20-30 feet long with a slender profile. Typically the lancha has one outboard motor, is capable of traveling at speeds exceeding 30 mph and is frequently used to fish and transport narcotics illegally in the United States’ Exclusive Economic Zone near the U.S./Mexico border in the Gulf of Mexico.
While some of these launcha boats are being launched near the longtime narcotics and pirate trafficking area of Baghdad, Mexico, investigative reporting conducted by Texas Take News and global media outlets, has indicated that many are coming from further south, a claim that some area “experts” would totally dispute.
Coast Guard Sector/Air Station Corpus Christi has interdicted three lanchas north of the U.S./Mexico Maritime Border since Oct. 1, 2018.
From October 1, 2017 until September 30, 2018 the Coast Guard reported over 150 such launcha boat captures.