Australian Institute of Criminology

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Illegal fishing

Increasing demand for Australian seafood overseas and at home is putting pressure on both legal and illegal markets. Illegal fishing depletes fish stocks, damages ecosystems and disrupts the livelihood of lawful fishers. Destructive large haul fishing methods increase the problem. Although illegal fishing in Australia is believed to be small-scale and opportunistic, organised crime is nevertheless active, particularly in high value stocks such as abalone and rock lobster. The AIC’s national study into crime in the Australian fishing industry, has made wide-ranging recommendations suggesting legislative changes and increasing the specialist skills of fisheries officers. Links to this and other related national and international research are available on this website.

Reports and papers


AIC publications