It’s been a year since Sea Shepherd founder Paul Watson has been able to step on land, but there seems to be no end in sight for him as he is still wanted by Costa Rica and Japan on outstanding warrants due to his anti-whaling activities. He has also been forced to distance himself from the organization’s activities so that they will not face the same legal action he is on the run from.
Watson was detained in Germany around this time last year because of a 10-year-old navigation charge from Costa Rica. He then found out that Japan had also issued a warrant to arrest him for questioning and so rather than facing the charges, he skipped on his bail and fled the country aboard several succession of vessels that have kept him adrift in international waters. Except for a few deserted atolls, he has not been ashore since then in order to avoid the red notices from Interpol issued by Costa Rica and Japan. They have also requested member countries to arrest or detain him pending extradition if he should ever come across their borders.
To add to his and his organization’s woes, the US Ninth District Court of Appeal in Seattle has restrained Washington-based Sea Shepherd from confronting any Japanese whaling vessel. The Institute of Cetacean Research and its affiliated whaling fleet operator Kyodo Senpaku Kaisha filed the case in the court and the judges agreed that the activities of the organization were “the very embodiment of piracy“. Japan’s case against Watson is based on the allegations that he encouraged New Zealander Pete Bethune to board and trespass a whaling ship in 2010. But he believes that is just an excuse and that Japan will be filing “a thousand charges” against him if he ever got to step on Japanese soil.
[ via WA Today ]