VENTURA- On April 8, 2022, the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office announced that Peter Joseph Ancich, 54, of Rancho Palos Verdes, entered a settlement following an unlawful deposit of toxic substances outside the Ventura Harbor.
Ancich captains the “Sea Venture,” a commercial squid fishing vessel. On June 4, 2021, a California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) warden saw the Sea Venture traveling just outside the Ventura Harbor, then illegally disposing its squid wastewater, also known as “stick water.” Stick water is harmful to aquatic life due to its high concentration of ammonia.
“CDFW wardens work to protect our fish and wildlife so that we have a healthy environment for all,” said California Statewide Law Enforcement Association (CSLEA) President Alan Barcelona. “They are law enforcement officers who are very well versed in California Fish & Game codes in order to protect us.”
Under the terms of the settlement, Ancich will pay:
- $6,172 to the CDFW,
- $2,500 in civil penalties to the District Attorney’s Office,
- $3,328 in investigative costs to the District Attorney’s Office,
- and $3,000 for Supplemental Environmental Projects (SEP).
The CDFW will use the SEP funds to purchase and post signs at the Ventura Harbor advising commercial fishermen of laws prohibiting dumping squid wastewater within state waters, and to purchase equipment for patrol vessels to store perishable liquid samples.
The settlement also requires Ancich to comply with all applicable laws related to California Fish & Game Code section 5650.
This settlement is a result of a joint investigation conducted by the CDFW and the District Attorney’s Office Consumer and Environmental Protection.