Environmental Police Update on Carlton Hendricks III Shellfish Case

Final decision issued regarding harvest, sale of contaminated shellfish...

From Massachusetts Environmental Police:

Matter of Hendricks: In a case involving the harvest and attempted sale of contaminated shellfish, DMF immediately suspended the commercial shellfish permit and transaction card in 2018. Following the final decision, the permit and transaction card have been suspended until 2022. If the individual reapplies in 2022 (or thereafter), he will be subject to a 3-year probationary period. The final decision can be found at https://www.mass.gov/…/in-the-matter-of-carlton-hendricks-i…

From the Ruling

Carlton Hendricks III of Mashpee was accused of the harvesting shellfish from an area closed to commercial harvest due to contamination, attempting to sell those contaminated shellfish into commerce and attempting to conceal that the shellfish came from contaminated waters by misrepresenting the harvest area on his shellfish tags.  

Dr. David E. Pierce, Director of the state's Division of Marine Fisheries concludes that Mr. Hendricks did commit the violations of which his was accused.  As a result, the Division of Marine Fisheries will not reinstate, renew, issue or reissue Hendricks a commercial shellfish permit until January 1, 2022.  Upon reinstatement and reissuance, Hendricks' permit will be on a three year probationary period.  If Hendricks is found to have further violated marine fishery laws or regulations, he could face a permanent revocation.

The ruling by Dr. Pierce is final but Hendricks does have the right to seek a judicial review in Superior Court.

The document package includes extensive commentary on aboriginal fishing rights of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe, which are worth reading.  Dr. Pierce observed that aboriginal fishing rights are for the personal use and consumption of the fisherman and his family and do not extend to commercial fishing operations.

You can read the 43 page decision and attachments here.

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