National Fisherman

British oil major BP failed in its attempt to halt payments from a commercial fishermen's compensation fund, after alleging some of those named as suffering losses since the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill do not exist. 
 
A US Federal court denied BP's request to stop payments from the $2.3bn (€1.7bn, £1.4bn) fund, as the company alleged that some individuals who supposedly suffered commercial loss from the spill did not exist. BP argued that the $2.3bn amount was inflated, as more than half of the 40,000 victims represented by attorney Mikal Watts are not real.
 
The company added that Watts used fake Social Security numbers and other fraudulent documents in the compensation scheme.
 
The company has already paid more than $1bn from the Seafood Compensation Fund to the victims, and it wanted the second round of payments suspended.
 
However, district Judge Carl Barbier in New Orleans, who is overseeing litigation related to the oil spill, said a suspension of payment is unnecessary.
 
Barbier added that most of Watts' clients were deckhands and other workers who were usually employed on a temporary basis with little or no evidence to prove their past employment and losses suffered. They are not likely to get a large percentage of the $1bn-plus amount remaining in the fund, according to him.
 
"They were at best the tail wagging the dog. Maybe the flea on the tail wagging the dog," Barbier said.
 
Read the full story at International Business Times>>

National Fisherman Live

National Fisherman Live: 1/27/15

In this episode:

Assessment: Atlantic menhaden is not overfished
Bering Sea pollock fishery casts off
Dock to Dish opens Florida’s first CSF
Second wave of disaster funds for Alaska
Fisherman lands N.C.’s largest bluefin ever

Inside the Industry

The Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute is still seeking public review and comment on the Alaska Responsible Fisheries Management Conformance Criteria (Version 1.2, September 2011). The public review and comment period, which opened on Dec. 3, 2014, runs through Monday, Feb. 3.

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NOAA, in consultation with the Department of the Interior, has appointed 10 new members to the Marine Protected Areas Federal Advisory Committee. The 20-member committee is composed of individuals with diverse backgrounds and experience who advise the departments of commerce and the interior on ways to strengthen and connect the nation's MPA programs. The new members join the 10 continuing members appointed in 2012.

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