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Frenchman who damaged coral to be fined minimum B100k, authorities say

Frenchman who damaged coral to be fined minimum B100k, authorities say

PHUKET: It has been confirmed that a fine of at least 100,000 baht will be charged to the 67-year-old Frenchman, Jean Girard, who damaged coral when he dropped anchor at Patok Bay on the northwest side of Racha Yai Island on Mar 6.

marineenvironmentnatural-resourcestourism
By The Phuket News

Wednesday 18 March 2020, 03:37PM


Mr Girard outside Chalong Police station. He faces fines of at least 100,000 baht for the damage he inflicted on the coral at Patok Bay. Photo: DMCR

Mr Girard outside Chalong Police station. He faces fines of at least 100,000 baht for the damage he inflicted on the coral at Patok Bay. Photo: DMCR

Marine and Coastal Resources officials concluded their analysis of the damaged coral yesterday (Mar 17) and confirmed they will be sharing their findings with Chalong police who will include the information in their final report before submitting to Phuket Provincial court on Friday (Mar 20).

“We discovered the damaged coral to measure approximately one square metre which equates to about B20,000 in costs,” commented Somnuek Boonyai, Chief of the Department of Marine and Coastal Resources (DMCR) Region 6 office of the Preservation of Marine Life Section.

“However, there may well be additional costs for recovering the coral which I am waiting for from relevant officials and hope to receive later today (Mar 18),” he added.

“In total, the fine will be more than B100,000 in accordance with the Wildlife Preservation and Protection Act 2019 although other costs may be added and the final decision on the amount of the fine will be determined by the judge in court,” Mr Somnuek confirmed.

“Honestly, I do not want to make it a difficult situation because Mr Girard is relatively old and, with everything I do, I am mindful of his health.”

CMI - Thailand

On March 8, Mr Girard was taken to Chalong Police Station and faced two charges, Mr Somnuek confirmed.

“One charge is a breach of a regulation introduced by the DMCR under Section 17 of the Act on the Promotion of Marine and Coastal Resources Management B.E. 2558 (2015), which can incur a penalty of up to one year in prison or a fine of up to B100,000, or both.

“The second charge is for breach of Section 12 of the Wildlife Preservation and Protection Act 2019, which can incur a penalty of up to 10 years in prison or a fine of up to B1 million, or both.” (See original story here).

Mr Somnuek concluded by requesting people be mindful and cooperative in efforts to protect the environment.

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Timothy | 19 March 2020 - 08:25:40

f the authorities would fine the locals to this extent for their wrongdoings they would certainly change their ways. However, we hear of Thai boat operators damaging coral and getting a very small fine, if any at all. Taxi drivers causing major crashes, 500 baht fines. Always just a light slap on the wrist for the Thai's. They will never change.

Fascinated | 18 March 2020 - 18:46:57

I take it we can expect the same fines against Thais then in the future!!! That was a rhetorical statement by the way.

Capricornball | 18 March 2020 - 17:42:05

Yes, please...all you farangs, be mindful and cooperative in efforts to protect the environment.  As far as about 95% of Thais are concerned, they do not ever consider the environment, and regularly throw their trash everywhere, walk and stomp all over the reefs wherever they want, and leave their fishing nets and plastic packaging everywhere they go.  Men, women and children.

 

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