Chinese fishermen jailed over turtles

2014-05-10 21:59
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Manila - The Philippines has jailed 11 Chinese fishermen caught with endangered sea turtles off a disputed shoal in the South China Sea, officials say, rejecting demands from China to free the men.

China has claims on the South China Sea, an area rich in energy deposits and an important passageway traversed each year by $5 trillion worth of ship-borne goods.

Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam also have claims on the area.

The Philippine National Police on Tuesday intercepted a Chinese fishing boat carrying about 350 marine turtles off Half Moon Shoal in the Spratlys, arrested its crew and took them to the southwestern province of Palawan to face charges of violating wildlife protection laws.

If found guilty, the fishermen, who were transferred to a provincial jail late on Friday, face prison terms ranging from 12 to 20 years, but each can post bail of about $3 400 to secure temporary liberty while facing trial.



Read more on:    philippines  |  endangered species

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