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Fishing Louisiana Saltwater

Louisiana Shark Poachers Arrested, 2,073 Shark Fins Confiscated

by Dylan Polk   |  April 17th, 2012 17

Two men are in jail after Louisiana wildlife agents confiscated 2,037 shark fins from the duo's boat earlier this month. (Photo from the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries)

Poaching in itself is certainly something to be frowned upon, but this is just stomach-churning.

According to the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, Rick Nguyen, 37, of Buras, La., and Hung Anh Tiet, 29, of Dallas, Texas, were arrested by the Louisiana DWF Enforcement Division on April 8 after agents confiscated 2,073 shark fins from the two.

Both are charged with over the limit of sharks taken commercially, shark “finning” and intentional concealment of illegal fish.

The DWF reports that agents stopped by the duo’s boat, the Lady Lyanna, in Tiger Pass. Agents discovered 11 whole sharks on the deck, plus 12 sacks of fins in a hidden compartment. Agents say the fins came from 518 sharks — of which the bodies were not onboard — meaning the pair had illegally taken a whopping 529 sharks illegally.

Over the daily limit of sharks taken commercially and “finning” both net up to $350 in fines and 60 days in jail. Intentional concealment of illegal fish nets up to $950 in fines and 120 days in jail.

More penalties could be levied against Nguyen and Tiet, as the both face up $26,450 in civil restitution penalties, based off an estimated $50 per shark.


  • Mickey

    When will the authorities finally make penalties severe enough that this is discouraged? For what they were getting for the fins, the fines are just a slap on the wrist! Why not double the penalty for every fish over the limit? i.e. limit is two, one over the limit would cost $50., two over the limit would cost $100 plus $50., three over would cost $200 plus $100 plus $50., and so on…..

  • Richard

    Mickey is correct; violation of Fish & Wildlife laws in Kentucky can and often will result in loss of all the equipment and vehicles used in the crime, as well as fines and possible jail time. At minimum these pochers should lose the boat and all equipment and pay "heavy" fines along with a a few months of cleaning up the environment (community service).

    • Lawson

      I agree with you that the fines on these two men should be much higher in money and jail time. However, no one should ever have the right to take ANY property for ANY reason by anyone. It wouldn't be so bad if it were to stop there but once anyone is granted the power to consificate property – it usually doesn't stop there. They will continue to come up with "good" reasons to keep on doing it for many other reasons. (It has already started happening in other states.) Just supposing, someone borrowed something from you and used it in a crime and the police consificated it – would that still be justified. Many different things can start happening when the authorities start grabbing everything that was used in a crime….

  • upnorthangler

    Cut their fins off.

  • Gary

    Agree with you both

  • sharkman

    i think they sould cut there toes of

  • Rik

    They should lose their boat, trailer, truck and all fishing equipment aboard. Additionally, take away their commercial license permanently as well as any fishing and hunting rights. The only deterrent to these kind of people is hit them so hard in the pocket book they are unable to commit these atrocities again

  • FishyNW

    Sounds like the DFW should've helped the pair overboard to swim with their victims….

  • Wingtip

    Turn 'em over to PETA.

  • mkpe

    Just sick,Tthe same with tuna. It will be to late before enough action is taken. They should be HANGED

  • Huey

    Good for the enforcement people. Now make them have to name all their buyers and investigate them. That is the way to stop this slaughter

  • Ronco

    Look at these guys names. Their cultures are the cause of over fishing etc. They come here and ignore our laws like their countries ignore international laws meant to preserve species. Our commercial fisherman are forced to follow limit laws while foreign concerns more than make up for our conservation efforts!

  • Weimdad

    Take their boat and fishing gear too. Then give them the maximum punishment.

  • MP Crosson

    Yes – hand these *sswipes the harshest possible punishment. Seize their boats, trucks and all equipment, fine them the maximum and make them do some jail time, or at the very least, community service with an ocean conservation group so maybe these lamebrain idiots will learn something.

  • YUP

    Boats are seized

  • Eagle

    Gentlemen: I once worked at a school district where wealthy Chinese students were on free lunch and I asked the director of food services why they fed these obviously wealthy kids. Her words were "It is easier to feed them than to go to court on a racial descremination case." This is probably why these cases are only slap on the wrist.


    its a fish ppl !!!! A FISH

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