A fishing vessel has been detained in the Highlands amid a number of allegations, including bosses failing to prove they had fully paid crew.
The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) seized the UK-registered Eder Sands at Scrabster on Thursday, July 2 following an investigation.
During the inspection, which was carried out in line with the UK Government’s Covid-19 guidance, surveyors reported that the vessel’s work agreements did not comply with Work in Fishing Convention (WIFC) regulations.
The trawler failed to present a WIFC certificate and the crew were found not to be properly qualified.
In addition, the owners could not provide evidence that the crew had been paid in full and wage receipts were not in accordance with the regulations.
It was also found that although the vessel had 20 crew, it did not have the requisite International Sewage Pollution Prevention Certificate.
The MCA said the 36m-long trawler will be released when it complies with all the requisite regulations and requirements.
Abhinav Chaudhary, the Aberdeen-based principal marine surveyor for the MCA, said: “This sends a very clear message to the fishing industry.
“You must comply with the Work in Fishing Convention regulations and there is lots of good guidance available on the MCA website or you can speak to your nearest marine office.”
Ian Blair, assistant director governance (technical), added: “Whilst the MCA will work with the fishing industry to implement the requirements of ILO188, we will not hesitate to take action when significant failings are identified.
“Whilst our surveyors have been working from home during this pandemic, we have still investigated any complaints we have received.
“We cannot stress enough that we will take action when we have concerns about non-compliance and no-one is exempt from that.”