Two Greencastle fishing vessels detained by the Irish Naval Service

Vessels escorted to Cobh Harbour

Two Greencastle-based fishing vessels have been detained by the Irish Naval Service, in the Celtic Sea.

The detention took place at midday yesterday (Thursday).

Donegal Live understands that the skippers of both Greencastle vessels have subsequently been released without charge.

The Naval Service confirmed the LÉ William Butler Yeats detained two Irish-registered fishing vessels approximately 75 nautical miles southeast of Cork Harbour.

The vessels are currently moored in Cobh and there is an An Garda Síochána presence on the pier.

The detained vessels were fishing for prawns and white fish in a fishery known as the Smalls.

One of them left Greencastle on Friday past (September 4) and the other left Dunmore East in County Waterford on Sunday (September 6).

The vessels were among 25 Irish trawlers fishing in the area, which has seen an increase in activity since the closure of a prawn fishery at the Porcupine Bank off the west coast of Ireland.

The Greencastle skippers could have been charged within 48 hours or summonsed to appear in court at a later date.

These latest detentions brings to 10 the number of fishing vessels detained by the Irish Naval Service for alleged fishing offences in Irish waters since the start of 2020.

The Naval Service conducts at-sea fishery inspections in line with a service level agreement with the Sea Fisheries Protection Authority.

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