U.S. court calls Sea Shepherd activity ‘piracy’
Los Angeles, CA, United States (4E) – The 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals has characterized the activities of anti-whaling group Sea Shepherd as piracy.
According to internet news Chief Judge Alex Kozinski said to be a pirate “you don’t need a peg leg or an eye patch”.
“When you ram ships, hurl glass containers of acid, drag metal-reinforced ropes in the water to damage propellers and rudders, launch smoke bombs and flares with hooks, and point high-powered lasers at other ships, you are, without a doubt, a pirate. No matter how high-minded you believe your purpose to be,” Judge Kozinski said.
While an international treaty has banned commercial whaling for 25 years, certain countries, including Japan and Norway, under a loophole hunt whales for “scientific research”.
The court was overturning an earlier decision which had dismissed claims from Japanese whalers that Sea Shepherd boats had breached an order to stay 500 yards (457 metres) from them.
But Sea Shepherd’s Paul Watson said the judge had ignored aggression from the Japanese fleet, which has clashed with Sea Shepherd vessels in recent days.