26 Apr 2011

CNMI shark fin ban to come into effect

3:08 pm on 26 April 2011

A three-month grace period for the use of shark fins expires in the Northern Marianas tomorrow.

On January the 27th, the CNMI became the first U.S. territory to ban shark fins but another 90 days were allowed to end shark finning.

The law imposes a fine of at least 5,000 US dollars but not more than 30,000 and/or imprisonment for up to six months for those found breaking the law.

The policy in the CNMI was inspired by Hawaii, the first U.S. state to make it illegal to possess, sell or distribute shark fins.

The CNMI ban will be enforced by the Division of Fish and Wildlife and the Department of Public Safety as well as the Office of the Attorney General.

The CNMI, in turn, inspired Guam to also ban shark fins.