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Ocean Choice International charged with illegal fishing

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Seafood harvester and partner company likely to plead guilty

Local seafood harvesting and processing company Ocean Choice International has been charged with illegal fishing.

OCI and 55104 Newfoundland and Labrador Inc., its partner in a limited partnership agreement, have each been charged with violating the province’s Fisheries Act between Feb. 4 and Feb. 10 of this year.

It’s alleged the companies fished for Greenland halibut in the Northeast Newfoundland Slope — an area encompassing 46,833 square kilometres against the 200-mile limit, off the northeast coast of the island. Formerly known as Tobin’s Point, the area has been declared a marine refuge.

The matter was called in provincial court in St. John’s Friday morning, but was postponed until Oct. 10. It’s set for speedy disposition, meaning the companies are likely to plead guilty to the charges.

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