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January 24, 2013 - Public comments on the Draft Division Enforcement Priorities for 2013 are due March 18, 2013. NOAA has committed to establishing its national enforcement priorities every two years and its division (regional) enforcement priorities each year to meet our mission and guide our planning. Setting division priorities supports sustainable fisheries and protected resources by helping us focus our resources and strategically use our state and federal partnerships to provide the most benefit for marine resources and the American people.
January 23, 2013 - NOAA special agents Troy Audyatis and Christopher McCarron of Office of Law Enforcement’s Northeast Division received recognition in January from Assistant Attorney General Ignacia S. Moreno for a multi-year investigation into illegal importing and trafficking of narwhal tusks and sperm whale teeth. The Department of Justice certificates of commendation note Audyatis’s and McCarron’s “outstanding performance and invaluable assistance” in support of DOJ’s Environment and Natural Resources Division.
The successful prosecution of David Place, Andrei Mikhalyov and Charles Manghis resulted in the defendants being sentenced to a collective total of 43 months incarceration, a $50,000 fine and the forfeiture of a number of ivory carvings.
Sperm whales and narwhals are protected under the Endangered Species Act. These successful prosecutions sent a deterrent message that wildlife smuggling is a serious crime.
.December 12, 2012 - The North Pacific Fishery Management Council has presented its highest honor—the Bob Mace Distinguished Service Award—to Assistant Special Agent in Charge Kenneth Hansen of NOAA’s Office of Law Enforcement’s Alaska Division.
November 16, 2012 - NOAA Enforcement Officer Bob Yerena received the NOAA Administrator’s Award for building exemplary agency partnerships and public support for effective enforcement and protection of Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary.