HONOLULU (KHON2) — Seven Honolulu men face multiple charges for allegedly fishing illegally in the Waikiki Marine Life Conservation District (MLCD).

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According to the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR), three DOCARE officers were patrolling Kaiwi State Scenic Shoreline after receiving complaints about a large group of divers taking both regulated and undersized fish from the waters. While conducting surveillance, one of the officers got a call about similar activities happening in the MLCD. 

DOCARE officers observed ten lights illuminating the water near MLCD. Officers then reported seeings two men walking to shore. When they contacted one of them, the partner fled back into the water. He notified the entire group and all the dive lights went out. Officers say they then tracked the men to the Diamond Head side of the Waikīkī Natatorium.

One of the men was reportedly witnessed signaling the others that they were in the clear. Officers then observed all seven men get out of the water with spears, dive gear and fish. 

Approximately 130 fish were inventoried and all seven men now face multiple charges including prohibited activities in an MLCD, having no diver flag and possession of undersized fish.  

All aquatic life was returned to the ocean.

We are deeply appreciative of the people who are helping us watch out for our precious aquatic resources and reporting potential violations to DOCARE. Taking fish from any State MLCD is akin to stealing a baby from a nursery and we take these violations seriously and will pursue violators aggressively.” 

Jason Redulla, Chief of the Department of Land and Natural Resources

DLNR is asking the public to report any suspicious or illegal fishing by calling 643-3567.

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