Three men cited for tuna violations in Plaquemines Parish

Three men cited for tuna violations in Plaquemines Parish

VENICE, LA (WVUE) - Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries agents cited three men for alleged commercial tuna violations in Plaquemines Parish.
While on a patrol in conjunction with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Marine Fisheries Service, wildlife agents say they made contact on Sep. 9 with James A. Gerakines, 41, and Charles Updegraff, 52, both of Chalmette, and Perry Menesses, 58, of St. Bernard.

The men were on the commercial fishing vessel "Jasmine" in the area of Tiger Pass located in Venice.
During a federal fish inspection the men were allegedly found to be in possession of numerous skipjack and yellowfin tuna.

After a lengthy investigation agents say they determined that Gerakines intended to sell the tuna upon return to Venice.
All three men face charges of failing to comply with taking or possessing tuna without the required commercial HMS permit and taking or possessing under sized yellowfin tuna.

Each of the two charges carries up to a $350 fine and 60 days in jail.
Additionally the men face civil restitution charges for the illegally taken tuna totaling $1,290.20.

Agents seized a total of 285 pounds of tuna and donated it to a local homeless shelter.

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