“It is important that we safeguard our natural resources and investigate those who unlawfully dispose of toxic substances that pose a threat to aquatic life.” – CSLEA President Alan Barcelona
VENTURA-On August 9, 2022, the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office announced that Ercole Terzoli, 66, of Rancho Palos Verdes, captain and owner of the fishing vessel San Pedro Pride, entered a settlement following an unlawful disposal of toxic substances into state waters.
On December 17, 2021, the commercial squid-fishing vessel San Pedro Pride was observed by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) illegally releasing wastewater from a catch of squid less than one mile from the Ventura Harbor. Squid wastewater is toxic to aquatic life due to the high concentrations of ammonia released when squid die. Squid vessels are required by law to properly treat or dispose of such waste, and are prohibited from releasing it into state waters.
Under the terms of the settlement, Terzoli will pay $2,950 in penalties to the CDFW Fish and Game Preservation Fund, $2,950 to the Ventura County Fish and Wildlife Propagation Fund, in addition to $2,500 in civil penalties and $7,165 in costs to the District Attorney’s Office. The settlement also requires compliance in the future with all applicable laws related to California Fish and Game Code section 5650.
The $2,950 to the Ventura County Fish and Wildlife Propagation Fund will be deposited into a county fund to benefit environmental programs in our community.
District Attorney Erik Nasarenko said, “It is critical that marine waterways remain free of toxic substances, and that polluters of our oceans are held accountable for their harmful conduct.”
This settlement is the result of a joint investigation conducted by the CDFW and the District Attorney’s Office Consumer and Environmental Protection Unit.