Sea Shepherd founder/president Captain Paul Watson was arrested in Germany for a 2005 Costa Rica shark campaign
by Jennifer Mishler
Categories: Animals, Causes, Environment.
Photo: Sea Shepherd

Earlier today, Sea Shepherd Conservation Society president and founder Captain Paul Watson was arrested in Frankfurt, Germany.

Sea Shepherd France president Lamya Essemlali posted to Facebook: “Captain Paul Watson was arrested this morning at Frankfurt airport on a warrant for his arrest for his intervention for the sharks in 2005 in the Costa Rica.”

The 2005 campaign was featured in “Sharkwater,” a film by Rob Stewart. “In an effort to protect sharks, Stewart teams up with renegade conservationist Paul Watson of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society. Their unbelievable adventure together starts with a battle between the Sea Shepherd and shark poachers in Guatemala, resulting in pirate boat rammings, gunboat chases, mafia espionage, corrupt court systems and attempted murder charges, forcing them to flee for their lives,” says the film’s site.

Check out our first update from Watson himself here.

About Jennifer Mishler

Jennifer Mishler is a writer, and a vegan and animal activist. When she's not writing, you can often find her volunteering or advocating for animal, environmental and human rights causes. Along with writing for Ecorazzi, she has contributed writing for nonprofits like Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, and enjoys blogging. She resides in the Washington, DC area (and loves all the vegan food it has to offer). Follow Jennifer on Twitter: @jennygonevegan.

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  • Lenmeister Drumington

    About time.

  • Anonymous

    Of course, the people who promote and support poaching and the illegal wildlife trade are going to love this since the charges stem from a ship collision between Sea Shepherd and a very clearly illegal shark finning boat. The Costa Rican flagged vessel was filmed killing sharks in Guatemalan waters.

    • Lenmeister Drumington

      According to your dear leader, legality doesn’t matter:

      “Justice takes precedence over the law” – Paul Watson, WW Viking Shores

      • Anonymous

        That “dear leader” routine got burned out by conservative morons repeatedly attacking President Obama. Thanks for playing.

  • Molly Isaac

    Jennifer, Lamya Essemlali has the dates wrong. The actual SSCS campaign took place in 2002 , as documented in “Sharkwater” which was produced in 2006 and released in 2007. Great documentary with footage that also serves as good defense evidence if ever Paul Watson stands trial in Costa Rica

    • Pete Wilson

      Why didn’t it serve as a good defense when the original charges were laid? According to this article, he was scheduled for trial but did not appear. This could already have been behind him had he faced his accuser and stood by his convictions.

  • Victoria Randolph

    let him the fuck go

  • Ednakano

    Euro-Pol start to limmit Eco-terrorist activity. SSCS is one of those terrorist school and Cult leader PW is main force of SSCS. Once shout down SSCS activity, EU will be much safe.

    • Anonymous

      i’d love to kick your head in.

  • Jeffwhite980

    Update from Paul Watson’s associate Elissa Sursara on Facebook:

    “Arrest update from Paul Watson: Paul has made contact with me from Frankfurt airport jail. He has been given periodic access to his mobile phone and is being treated well. One of the police officers is a vegan and even asked for an autograph. He says he is comfortable, but fighting a horrible cold. The Costa Rican officials are trying to arrest him for the events around the time of Sharkwater. A fishermen accused Paul of trying to kill him, though it is evident that Paul did not and that evidence is on film. He said the warrant dates back to an event in 2002. It is unclear why they have issued it ten years later. Paul says thank you for the concern on Facebook and Twitter and finds it very encouraging. The police have given him a vegan salad for tonight’s dinner. He has two lawyers who came to him by way of the European Parliament and he will see the judge tomorrow morning. For more updates, visit #FreeCaptainWatson”

  • Laura Leigh


  • Pilot whale

    Very good :-) hope that scumbag will rot in jail.

  • romika3

    Paul Watson and the SSCS have a history of attacking and demonizing the group that their organization supposedly whats to bring about behavioral change (justified or not justified). It has been shown time after time that this approach does not work and results in the target group “digging in their heels”. Stating that these methods are acceptable as long as there is no injury or death is shallow justification for their violence and stating that a clause in a UN charter somehow gives the SSCS “policing” rights holds no water.

  • Anon

    Criminals get arrested, however, Watson is the son of Poseidon and can thus call himself a demigod. He does not submit to human laws and does whatever pleases him. It’s just a matter of time until he summons a grenade launcher and blasts his way outta the prison.

  • Anonymous

    Anyone who sides with Costa Rica on this is effectively siding with organized crime and poachers. The Coasta Rican flagged vessel that Sea Shepherd intercepted and detained was filmed illegally killing sharks in Guatemalan waters prior to the incident.

    Of course, the incident consists of a ship collision that resulted in no deaths because Sea Shepherd doesn’t kill people — and doesn’t threaten to either. In three decades of direct action campaigns SSCS has never attempted to kill anybody.

    Not that this would matter to pro-whaling propagandists. If Paul Watson personally shut down a human trafficking ring or a drug smuggling operation they would still cheer for Watson’s arrest.

    • Lenmeister Drumington

      “Anyone who sides with Costa Rica on this is effectively siding with organized crime and poachers.”

      = FALSE DICHOTOMY (look it up)

      “The Coasta Rican flagged vessel that Sea Shepherd intercepted and detained was filmed illegally killing sharks in Guatemalan waters prior to the incident.”

      How about you post a link to that film so we can all have a look at it?

      • Anonymous

        You can see it in the documentary film: “Sharkwater” (look it up)

      • Lenmeister Drumington

        I looked it up and it doesn’t contain anything like you say it does. This doesn’t come as a surprise to me.

      • Anonymous

        That is a lie. The documentary film “Sharkwater” shows clear footage of the Costa Rican flagged illegal long line fishing boat killing sharks in Guatemalan waters — in addition to Sea Shepherd intercepting it and the ship collision that resulted in these new bogus charges.

        The same documentary also captured video of illegally gotten shark fins being dried on the roofs of buildings (which the criminals quickly attempted to hide once they spotted the cameras) — also in Costa Rica.

        It’s unfortunate that some are perfectly willing to support documented organized crime in Costa Rica in their obsessive condemnation of environmental activists.

        It’s not as if nobody pays any attention to the problem of shark finning and no reasearch has ever been done into the illicit business of IUU fishing.