May 15, 2012
We have received extremely disturbing news from our friends at Sea Shepherd regarding the current status of the charges against Sea Shepherd founder, Captain Paul Watson. Costa Rica is indeed, requesting extradition and they plan to charge Paul with crimes relating to the incidents which occurred during the filming of the movie “Sharkwater”.
If world media reacts responsibly enough, they will report on this issue in the proper context, that being, as a politically motivated action made by the Costa Rica government. There obviously were no grounds for criminal charges and this warrant was ignored/rejected by Interpol. The German authorities should follow suit and discount any idea of extradition. Interpol’s statement to clarify the record concerning Paul Watson, which can be read HERE, reads as follows:
“On 2 March, 2012 INTERPOL issued a written statement to all 190 member countries making it clear that it would not publish a Red Notice seeking the arrest of Paul Franklin Watson because its Office of Legal Affairs was not satisfied that the request was in compliance with INTERPOL’s Constitution and Rules.
INTERPOL does not itself issue arrest warrants. At the request of a member country it can publish a Red Notice, or international wanted persons alert. A Red Notice is not an international arrest warrant, nor can INTERPOL demand that any member country arrest the subject of a Red Notice.
Any enquiries relating to arrests of individuals should be directed to the national authorities where the person was taken into custody.”
Even though some within the Costa Rica government are calling for extradition, there are also legislators in Costa Rica calling for the immediate release of Paul Watson. The office of legislator Claudio Monge Pereira, a representative of Partido Accion Ciudadana (Civil Action), an opposition political party in Costa Rica, has issued a strong statement of support for Paul. Please read HERE.
Mr. Monge stated, “[…] in case Mr. Watson is extradited (to Costa Rica), he should be welcomed in a manner that he truly deserves, symbolically granting him the keys to our oceans, so that he can do what our governments are incapable of doing: to set things right once and for all! Freedom for Captain Watson, Defender of Marine Life!”
We still have until tomorrow to force Germany to release Paul. Please contact Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger, the Federal Minister of Justice in Berlin, Germany.
Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger Federal Minister of Justice Deutscher Bundestag Platz der Republik 11011 Berlin Telephone 030 – 227 751 62 Fax 030 – 227 764 02
Federal Ministry of Justice Mohrenstrasse 37 10117 Berlin, Germany Telephone: +49 (030) 18 580-0 Telefax: +49 (030) 18 580-9525
We also need to email the office of the Head Prosecutor at the Appeal Court in Frankfurt:
Dr. Guido Westerwelle
Minister of Foreign Affairs
Platz der Republik 1
Tel.: 030 / 22771636
Fax: 030 / 22776562
Dear Ms Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger,
I was very concerned to hear that Germany has detained Sea Shepherd’s Captain Paul Watson for possible extradition to Costa Rica. I understand that the warrant for Captain Watson’s arrest is politically motivated and possibly due to an incident in which Sea Shepherd uncovered an illegal shark finning operation.
I support Sea Shepherd’s efforts to monitor and publicise illegal fishing and whaling around the world and recognize that some illegal fishing operations try to use international law to shut down the Sea Shepherd operations.
I urge you to consider the valuable work Captain Watson and Sea Shepherd are undertaking globally to highlight the dangers to our oceans in considering this extradition request.
Please visit the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society website HERE or click on the photo of Paul above, to be redirected to their site.
For the oceans,