The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is finally done with Carlos Rafael, even if the federal penal system is not.
– News covered by Quincy Quarry News with commentary added.
The Codfather will never fish again.
While onetime fishing mogul Carlos “The Codfather” Rafael will not be sleeping with the fishes, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced earlier this week that it has settled its civil case against Rafael and his fishing captains over their past over-fishing abuses.
“Today’s settlement of the government’s civil case against Carlos Rafael accomplishes NOAA’s chief objective of permanently removing Mr. Rafael from participation in the federal fisheries,” Chris Oliver, NOAA Fisheries assistant administrator, said in a statement.
“Mr. Rafael’s forced divestiture and permanent ban from commercial fishing is a fitting end to this case, on top of the criminal sentence he is already serving.”
The sixty-seven year old Codfather remains incarcerated at Devens FMC and faces nineteen months remaining on the forty-six month sentence imposed almost two years after his conviction on falsifying fishing records to exceed fishing quotas, false labeling of fish caught, conspiracy, tax evasion and bulk smuggling.
As part of his criminal conviction, the Codfather was also hit with $300,000 in fines and restitution – including $109,000 to the Internal Revenue Service – as well as three years of supervised release after his release from federal prison.
Additionally, per the terms of the civil settlement, the Codfather must pay more than $3 million in penalties, relinquish the seafood permit issued to his Carlos Seafood business by the start of September and permanently cease all commercial fishing – except for scalloping – by the end of this year.
The Codfather scalloping operations, which were not part of his criminal case, must be halted by the end March next year.
“This settlement also holds accountable the vessel captains who now face suspensions, probationary periods, additional monitoring and reporting requirements, and a the threat of a lifetime ban from the industry if they intentionally violate federal fisheries again,” Oliver said. “It also serves as a reminder that no one is exempt from the rules.”