ST. BERNARD PARISH, La. (KLFY) – A man was cited on Feb. 13 for alleged commercial oyster violations, according to the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF).
Luis A. Garcia, 23, of Mexico, was cited for failing to have valid commercial fishing, commercial gear, and commercial vessel licenses and obtaining commercial licenses by fraud, according to LDWF.
LDWF said that started its investigation into Garcia after stopping him in Lake Borgne on the state’s public oyster seed ground in November 2022 for a license and creel check. Garcia produced Louisiana residential commercial fishing licenses even though he admitted to living in Mexico, LDWF said.
When agents asked for additional identification, Garcia produced a valid ID from Mexico and non-residential commercial fishing licenses from Texas that listed his Mexico residence as his address, according to LDWF.
After further investigation, agents determined that Garcia fraudulently obtained 2022 residential commercial fishing licenses.
LDWF also said that according to trip tickets filed by Garcia, he illegally caught, landed and sold around 5,915 sacks of oysters with a dockside value of $354,900 in 2022.
According to LDWF, failing to have valid commercial fishing, commercial gear and commercial vessel licenses, and obtaining a license by fraud carries up to 90 days in jail and a $500 fine for each offense.
Garcia may also be subject for civil restitution for the replacement value of the illegally sold oysters, LDWF said.