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Any charges reported in these press releases are merely accusations and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
On 3/12/21, Dillingham AWT cited CFEC permit holders Malcolm Upton, age 26 of Togiak, and Phil Bavilla, age 46 also of Togiak, following an investigation into commercial fishing violations that occurred during the 2020 Bristol Bay fishery. On 7/25/20, Upton was contacted in the Togiak District operating two 50 fathom set gillnets that fished during a closed period. The corkline, buoys, and fishing site for the second net were not marked as required by regulation. Investigation showed the CFEC permit holder for the second net was Phil Bavilla, however Bavilla was not present at the fishing site during Upton’s operation of his gear as required by regulation. Investigation also showed Bavilla’s net had not been picked for some time and the salmon taken in the net were spoiled and unsuitable for commercial sale. The fish from Upton’s net were salvaged but half were sold using the permit of a third CFEC permit holder, who was not present at the time of delivery as required by regulation.
On 8/16/20, Dillingham AWT was in the Togiak District again following complaints of a commercial set gillnet wasting salmon. AWT located an unattended set gillnet containing many heavily scavenged and spoiled salmon. The corkline, buoys, and fishing site were not marked as required by regulation, and the net was commercial fishing during a closed period. Investigation showed the CFEC permit holder responsible for the net was Phil Bavilla.
Following the investigation Bavilla was cited for 2 counts of Waste of Salmon, 2 counts of Commercial Fishing Closed Period, 2 counts of Failure to Identify Stationary Fishing Gear, 2 counts of Fail to Mark Gillnet Corks, and 2 counts of Fail to Mark Gillnet Buoys. Upton was cited for, Waste of Salmon, Commercial fishing Closed Period, Supplying False Information on a Fish Ticket, and Employing Unlicensed Crew. Arraignments were scheduled for 4/19/21 in the Dillingham District Court.
Posted on 3/27/2021 3:30:27 PM by DPS\jdwittkop