Chapter 09 - Fishing

24.0964 Giant grouper (Epinephelus lanceolatus).


(a) This section applies to the Giant grouper (Epinephelus lanceolatus), also known as Ata’ata-uli or Vaolo.

(b) No person shall:

(1) Possess, deliver, carry, transport or ship by any means whatsoever Giant grouper or the body parts of any such species;

(2) Import, export, sell or offer for sale any such species or body parts of such species; or

(3) Take or kill any such species in American Samoa.

(c) If any Giant grouper is caught or captured, it shall be immediately released, whether dead or alive. If the Giant grouper is captured alive, it shall be released in a manner that affords it the greatest opportunity for survival.

(d) It is not a defense that the Giant grouper was caught or captured inadvertently, as bycatch, or from another fishery.

(e) For purposes of this section, there shall be a rebuttable presumption that any Giant grouper, or part of a Giant grouper, found in possession was possessed or transferred in violation of this section.

(f) Notwithstanding subsection (a), any person who holds a permit issued by the Department of Marine and Wildlife Resources to conduct scientific research shall not be subject to the penalties of this section.

24.0963 Bumphead parrotfish (Bolbometopon muricatum).


(a) This section applies to the Bumphead parrotfish (Bolbometopon muricatum), also known as Green Humphead parrotfish, Uluto’i, Laea-uluto’i, or Galo uluto’i.

(b) No person shall:

(1) Possess, deliver, carry, transport or ship by any means whatsoever Bumphead parrotfish or the body parts of any such species;

(2) Import, export, sell or offer for sale any such species or body parts of such species; or

(3) Take or kill any such species in American Samoa.

(c) If any Bumphead parrotfish is caught or captured, it shall be immediately released, whether dead or alive. If the Bumphead parrotfish is captured alive, it shall be released in a manner that affords it the greatest opportunity for survival.

(d) It is not a defense that the Bumphead parrotfish was caught or captured inadvertently, as bycatch, or from another fishery.

(e) For purposes of this section, there shall be a rebuttable presumption that any Bumphead parrotfish, or part of a Bumphead parrotfish, found in possession was possessed or transferred in violation of this section.

(f) Notwithstanding subsection (a), any person who holds a permit issued by the Department of Marine and Wildlife Resources to conduct scientific research shall not be subject to the penalties of this section.

24.0958 Spiny Lobster (Parribacus sp.).


(a) It is unlawful to take, possess, sell or offer for sale eggbearing spiny lobsters.

(b) It is unlawful to take, possess, sell or offer for sale spiny lobsters that measure less than three and one eighth inches in carapace length, defined as the midline measurement taken from the leading edge of the carapace between the horns to the rear edge of the carapace.

(c) Lobsters taken, imported, sold or offered for sale must be whole to facilitate the measuring of these lobsters.

24.0957 Slipper Lobster (Parribacus sp.).


(a) It is unlawful to take, possess, import, export, sell or offer for sale eggbearing slipper lobsters.

(b) It is unlawful to use spears or snagging devices for the collection of slipper lobsters.

24.0962 Humphead Wrasse (Cheilinus undulatus).


(a) This section applies to the Humphead Wrasse (Cheilinus undulatus), also known as Napoleon Wrasse, Maori Wrasse, Lalafi, Tagafa, or Malakea.

(b) No person shall:

(1) Possess, deliver, carry, transport or ship by any means whatsoever Humphead Wrasse or the body parts of any such species;

(2) Import, export, sell or offer for sale any such species or body parts of such species; or

(3) Take or kill any such species in American Samoa.

(c) If any Humphead Wrasse is caught or captured, it shall be immediately released, whether dead or alive. If the Humphead Wrasse is captured alive, it shall be released in a manner that affords it the greatest opportunity for survival.

(d) It is not a defense that the Humphead Wrasse was caught or captured inadvertently, as bycatch, or from another fishery.

(e) For purposes of this section, there shall be a rebuttable presumption that any Humphead Wrasse, or part of a Humphead Wrasse, found in possession was possessed or transferred in violation of this section.

(f) Notwithstanding subsection (a), any person who holds a permit issued by the Department of Marine and Wildlife Resources to conduct scientific research shall not be subject to the penalties of this section.

24.0901 Definitions.


(1) “Department” means the Department of Marine and Wildlife Resources (A.S.C.A. § 24.0302(1)).

(2) “Director” means the director of DMWR (A.S.C.A. § 24.0302(2)).

(3) “Fish” means those species of the classes osteorchthyes, condrichtyes and agnathes that shall not be fished for except as authorized by rule of the Director. The term “fish” includes all stages of development and the body parts of fish species (A.S.C.A. § 24.0302(3)).

(4) “Shellfish” means those species of marine and freshwater invertebrates that shall not be taken except as authorized by rule of the Director. The term shellfish includes all stages of development and the body parts of shellfish species (A.S.C.A. § 24.0302(5)).

(5) “Aquarium fish” means any fish or shellfish collected alive and intended for home display or for the commercial aquarium fish industry.

(6) “Commercial fishing” means any fishing activity in which part or all of the catch is sold or marketed or for which the fisherman receives income as a result of the fishing activity, such as payment for fishing charter, a salary for fishing, or cash for their portion of the catch.

(7) “Coral” means any living aquatic organism of the subphylum cnidaria that are capable of secreting hard skeletal parts or can incorporate stony secretions within or around their tissues e.g. ermatypic corals, black coral, precious corals, blue coral, organpipe corals, fire corals, lace corals, etc.

(8) “Deep-water bottom fish” means those species of fish that live on or near the bottom and are taken at depths greater than 200 feet.

(9) “Drift Gillnet” means any net that is deployed without being staked or otherwise attached to the shore or bottom so that it is able to drift unattached.

(10) “Fish aggregation device (FAD) ” means any object moored in the offshore waters of American Samoa for the purpose of attracting fish.

(11) “Fish habitat” means any organic or inorganic material so configured as to create an environment that attracts, retains or is significantly used by populations of fish and/or shellfish.

(12) “Fish / Shellfish trap” means any portable or unbaited fish catching apparatus consisting of an enclosure with entrances designed to admit and retain the catch.

(13) “Fish weir” means any baited or unbaited fish or shellfish catching apparatus consisting of a pocket or trap that is placed in a fixed position.

(14) “Fishing” means to take or attempt to take fish or shellfish by any means. This includes, but is not limited to, the use of gear such as hook and line, spears, nets, traps, weirs, and prohibited gears such as dynamite and fish poisons.

(15) “Ornamental shells” means any shellfish collected primarily for the value of their shell.

(16) “Recreational mooring buoy:” Any buoy or mooring device deployed by the department or the United States Government for the purpose of preventing damage to coral or fish habitat by giving recreational vessels a safe option to anchoring.

(17) “Subsistence fishing” means any fishing activity where the catch is not sold or marketed but is shared within the family or village structure for the purpose of home consumption.

(18) “Take” means to harass, harm, pursue, hunt, shoot, wound, kill trap, capture, or collect, or attempt to engage in any such conduct.

(19) “Traditional fish trap” means any fish or shellfish trap constructed of natural materials in the style of traditional Samoan fish traps (Enu, Faga, Sele, etc.).

(20) “Traditional surround net” means a large leaf sweep apparatus constructed of natural materials in the style of the traditional Samoan lau.

(21) “Vessel” means any sort of water craft or float used to transport persons or gear.

(22) “Waters of American Samoa” means all fresh and brackish waters, reefs, and intertidal zones, as well as marine areas within the U.S. Territorial seas surrounding the islands of American Samoa.

(23) “Buy” means to purchase, barter, exchange or trade, and includes an offer to buy.

(24) “Sell” means to exchange or offer to exchange for a price or something of value and includes possession for sale, barter, exchange or trade.

(25) “SCUBA gear” means the use of a portable and self-contained underwater breathing device, consisting of compressed air tanks and breathing regulator, or any other device used to deliver compressed air to a diver, that allows a diver to successfully remain underwater longer than a person can hold his or her breath.

(26) “Live rock” means any coral or basalt rock with living marine organisms growing on it.

24.0905 Dealers Records.


(a) In accordance with 24.0305 A.S.C.A., every seafood dealer shall make a legible record in the form of a receipt in triplicate on forms to be furnished by the department.

(b) The original signed copy of the receipt shall be delivered to the fisherman at the time of the purchase or receipt of the fish or shellfish. The duplicate copy shall be kept by the dealer or person receiving the fish or shellfish for a period of six months and shall be available for inspection at any time within that period by the department. The triplicate copy shall be delivered to the department on or before the sixteenth day of each month.

24.0906 Other Required Records – Fishermen, Fish Processors, and Fish Wholesalers.


(a) Commercial Fishermen shall be required to keep all applicable records in accordance with 24.0306 A.S.C.A.

(b) Fish processors shall be required to file written reports as required by 24.0307 A.S.C.A.

(c) Fish wholesalers shall report all information to the department as required by 24.0308 A.S.C.A.

24.0907 Confidentiality of Records.


In accordance with 24.0309 A.S.C.A., the receipts, reports, or other records filed with the department and the information contained therein, shall be confidential, and the records shall not be public records, and the information contained in the records shall be compiled or published as summaries, so as not to disclose the individual record or business of any person.

24.0908 Annual Proclamation.


(a) Each year, the Director of the Department shall issue a proclamation establishing the following for the taking of fish and shellfish:

(1) Seasons,

(2) Area and gear restrictions,

(3) License and permit fees, and

(4) Harvest limits.

(b) Annual proclamations shall be effective beginning on January 1st through December 31st of each year, or until superseded by further proclamation of the Director.

(c) Copies of the current proclamation will be made available at the Department office in Fagatogo.

(d) The failure of the Department to issue an annual proclamation does not invalidate any existing administrative rules.

24.0910 Engaging in prohibited activities in restricted fishing areas.


It is unlawful to engage in prohibited fishing activities in restricted areas as defined in the annual proclamation.

24.0911 Fagatele Bay National Marine Sanctuary.


In conjunction with existing federal regulations, the following activities are prohibited in Fagatele Bay National Marine Sanctuary subzones A and B, the boundaries of which incorporate all lands and waters of Fagatele Bay from the mean high water line seaward to a line extending from Fagatele Point to Steps Point.

(a) No person shall gather, take, break, cut, damage, destroy or possess any invertebrate, shellfish, coral, bottom formation, or marine plant. Including but not limited to the taking of spiny lobster, slipper lobster, and tridacnid clams.

(b) No person shall possess or use spearguns, including such devices known as Hawaiian slings, pole spears, arbalettes, pneumatic and spring loaded spearguns, bow and arrows, bang sticks, or any similar taking device.

(c) No person shall possess or use seines, trammel nets, or any fixed net.

(d) No vessel shall anchor in living coral or anchor in any manner that causes damage to living coral.

(e) No vessel shall discharge, or visitor cause to be discharged, in the marine environment any substance that may damage fish habitat. This includes but is not limited to garbage, human waste, and oily bilge.

(f) There shall be a rebuttable presumption that any items listed in this section found in the possession of a person within the Sanctuary have been used within the sanctuary.

(g) There shall be a rebuttable presumption that any fish or shellfish found in the possession of a person within the sanctuary was taken within the sanctuary.

24.0912 Fagatele Bay subzone A.


The following activites are prohibited in Fagatele Bay subzone A, the boundaries of which incorporate all lands and waters of Fagatele Bay from the mean high water line seaward to a line extending from Fagatele Point to Matautuloa Benchmark.

(a) No person shall possess or use fishing poles, handlines, or trawls.

(b) Commercial fishing shall be prohibited.

24.0913 Rose Atoll National Wildlife Refuge (RANWR).


In conjunction with the existing federal regulations, the following activities are prohibited within RANWR, the boundaries of which incorporate all lands within the extreme low water line of the outside perimeter reef except at the entrance channel where the boundary is a line extended between the extreme low waterlines on each side of entrance channel.

(a) No person shall gather, take, break, cut, damage, destroy or possess any invertebrate, shellfish, coral, bottom formation, or marine plant. This includes but is not limited to the taking of spiny lobster, slipper lobster, and tridacnid clams.

(b) No person shall take or attempts to take fish.

(c) No person shall enter RANWR without a special use permit, obtainable at DMWR.

24.0920 Use of prohibited fishing gears.


It is unlawful to use or possess in a fishing area any gear prohibited by the annual proclamation.

24.0921 Taking of fish with explosive.


It is unlawful to take or attempt to take fish or shellfish with dynamite or any other explosive.

24.0922 Use of explosives.


It is unlawful to place or explode dynamite or any explosive, or cause to be placed or explode dynamite or any explosive in the waters of American Samoa for any reason except as may be authorized by the American Samoa Government pursuant to all applicable regulations and permits.

24.0923 Use of Poisonous substances.


It is unlawful to take or attempt to take fish or shellfish using any substance that has a poisonous or intoxicating effect on fish or shellfish. These prohibited substances include but are not limited to laundry bleach, quinaldine, insecticides, herbicides, and traditional fish poisons derived from plant and animal materials such as Barringtonia (futu) and Derris (Ava niu kini).

24.0924 Use of electrical devices.


It is unlawful to take or attempt to take fish or shellfish with any electrical device that operates by shocking with an electrical current.

24.0925 Use of SCUBA gear.


Subject to the provisions of section 24.0916 and this section, fishing using SCUBA gear is lawful except that:

(a) It is unlawful to take, attempt to take, or assist in the taking of fish or shellfish (or both) using SCUBA gear by any means other than by hand or by spear.

(b) It is unlawful to take, attempt to take, or assist in the taking of fish or shellfish (or both) using SCUBA gear where the catch or harvest taken exceeds:

(1) Two fish or two shellfish of any legal size or weight, or one fish and one shellfish of any legal size or weight, per diver per day, or

(2) The maximum weight of five pounds legal size fish or shellfish in any combination per diver per day, if the quantity of catch or harvest taken is more than two.

(c) It shall be prima facie evidence of a violation of this section for any person when in or on the waters of American Samoa, in any vehicle or vessel, or on the shoreline close to fishing locations, to have in possession SCUBA gear and a catch or harvest which exceeds the limits imposed under subsection (b). In all cases in which such possession or custody is proven, the burden of proof shifts to the person found to be in possession to show that the catch or harvest was taken without using SCUBA gear.

24.0926 Use of SCUBA gear at night.


It is unlawful to take, attempt to take, or assist in the taking of fish or shellfish (or both) in any quantity using SCUBA gear after sunset and before sunrise.

(a) Possession or custody of fish or shellfish (or both) and SCUBA gear by any person when in or on the waters of American Samoa, in vehicle or vessel, or on the shoreline close to fishing locations, during the period commencing one hour after sunset and terminating one hour after sunrise, shall be prima facie evidence that the catch or harvest was taken in violation of this section.

(b) In all cases where such possession or custody is proven, the burden of proof shifts to the person found to be in possession to show that the catch or harvest was taken after sunrise and before sunset.

24.0927 Possession of explosives, poisonous substances, or electrical devices.


It is unlawful for any person when in or on the waters of American Samoa, or on the land close to fishing locations, to possess any explosive, poisonous substances, or electrical devices designed to shock fish. Unless the person proves, by the preponderance of evidence, that he intended to use the item for a purpose other than illegal fishing.

24.0928 Hand nets.


The frame opening for hand or scoop nets shall not exceed three feet in diameter.

24.0929 Cast or throw nets.


It is unlawful to possess, use or attempt to take fish or shellfish with a cast or throw net with a stretched mesh size less than three quarters of an inch.

24.0930 Gillnets.


It is unlawful to:

(a) Possess, use or attempt to take fish with a gillnet with a stretched mesh size of less than one and one half inches.

(b) Deploy a gillnet or series of continuous gillnets with a combined length in excess of 700 feet.

(c) Deploy a gillnet within fifty feet of another gillnet or weir.

(d) Abandon or discard a gillnet within the waters of American Samoa.

(e) Deploy a gillnet in any location contrary to existing U.S. Coast Guard or Territorial regulations, or cause a hazard to navigation.

(f) Deploy a drift gillnet in the waters of American Samoa.

(g) Deploy a gillnet in water greater than sixty (60) feet deep.

(h) Gillnets must be checked at least every three hours and cleared of fish and debris.

24.0931 Seines, surround nets and drag nets.


Seines, surround nets and drag nets must have a stretched mesh size of at least one and one half (1.5) inches. This restriction shall not apply to the construction or use of traditional surround nets (lau) made from materials.

24.0932 Fish Weirs.


Any person placing or maintaining a fish weir in the waters of American Samoa must first obtain an official permit from the department. The permittee must comply with all requirements of the permit.

24.0933 Fish Traps.


(a) Fish and shellfish traps shall not exceed six (6.0) feet in any linear dimension i.e. length, width, height or diameter.

(b) All fish and shellfish traps must be checked and emptied at least every twenty four (24) hours.

(c) It is unlawful to deploy a fish or shellfish trap in any location where the trap, line or marker floats may pose a hazard to navigation.

(d) It is unlawful to abandon or discard a fish or shellfish trap in the waters of American Samoa.

(e) A permit is required from the department for the use of any fish or shellfish trap(s) used commercially.

24.0934 Import and sale of illegal fishing gear.


It is unlawful to import, possess, sell or offer for sale any fishing gear that is prohibited from use by these laws.

24.0935 Illegally taken fish and shellfish.


It is unlawful to possess, receive, transport, buy, sell, or offer for sale any fish or shellfish that was taken in a manner contrary to these laws.

24.0936 Destruction of coral.


It is unlawful to willfully damage coral during fishing operations.

24.0937 Destruction of fish habitat.


It is unlawful to willfully damage or destroy fish habitat at any time unless authorized by the American Samoa Government pursuant to all applicable permits and regulations.

24.0950 Unlawful taking of fish or shellfish.


It is unlawful to take any fish or shellfish in any manner, location, quantity, size or season contrary to the annual proclamation.

24.0951 Coral.


(a) It is unlawful to collect any living coral in water less than 60 feet deep.

(b) No commercial harvest of coral is permitted without a valid coral collection permit from the department. The permittee must comply with all requirements and conditions of the permit.

24.0952 Live rock.


(a) It shall be unlawful for any person to knowingly collect, excavate, remove or relocate any quantity of live rock by any means from the waters of American Samoa without a valid permit from the department. Permits may be issued for scientific study or for the mariculture operations in accordance with 24.0939.

(b) It shall be unlawful to sell, offer for sale, or possess for sale or export any quantity of live rock harvested from the waters of American Samoa, except pursuant to a valid mariculture permit under24.0939.

24.0953 Giant Clams (Tridacnidae).


(a) It is unlawful to take, possess, sell or import any tridacnid clam from the waters of American Samoa that measure less than seven (7.0) inches when measured across the longest part of the shell.

(b) Tridacnid clams imported, sold or offered for sale must be in whole condition with meat still attached to the shell to facilitate the measuring of these clams.

(c) Tridacnid clams taken for personal consumption must remain whole condition until they reach the fisherman’s home or the place of consumption so that they may be measured.

(d) These restrictions shall not apply to clams raised in captivity providing the following:

(1) The clam farmer possess a valid aquaculture permit from the department; and

(2) The possess can demonstrate that the clam was raised in captivity.

24.0954 Ornamental Shells.


The commercial harvest of ornamental shells from the waters of American Samoa requires a valid shell collection permit from the department. The permittee must comply with all requirements and conditions of the permit.

24.0955 Mangrove Crabs (Scylla serrata).


(a) It is unlawful to take, possess, sell, offer for sale, import or export eggbearing mangrove crabs.

(b) It is unlawful to take, possess, sell, offer for sale, import or export any mangrove crab that measures less than six (6.0) inches across the widest portion of the back.

24.0956 Coconut Crabs (Birgus latro).


(a) It is unlawful to take, possess, sell, offer for sale, import or export any eggbearing coconut crab.

(b) It is unlawful to interfere with a coconut crab engaged in the activity of releasing larvae into the waters of American Samoa.

(c) It is unlawful to take, possess, sell, offer for sale, import or export any coconut crab that measures less than three (3.0) inches across the widest portion of the back.

(d) These regulations will apply to coconut crabs found throughout the Territory including land areas.

24.0959 Sea Turtles.


The following activities relating to the green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas), the hawksbill turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata), and the leatherback turtle (Dermochelys coriacea) are prohibited:

(1) Import, export, sell or offer for sale any such species or body parts of such species,

(2) Take any such species in American Samoa, and

(3) Possess, deliver, carry, transport or ship by any means whatsoever any such species or the body parts of any such species.

24.0960 Marine Mammals.


It is unlawful to:

(1) Take a marine mammal in American Samoa,

(2) Import, export, sell or offer for sale any marine mammal or the body parts of any marine mammal, and

(3) Possess, deliver, carry, transport or ship by any means whatsoever any marine mammal or the body parts of any marine mammal.

24.0961 Sharks.


(a) No person shall:

(1) Possess, deliver, carry, transport or ship by any means whatsoever any shark species or the body parts of any such species;

(2) Import, export, sell or offer for sale any such species or body parts of such species; or

(3) Take or kill any such species in American Samoa.

(b) If any shark is caught or captured, it shall be immediately released, whether dead or alive. If the shark is captured alive, it shall be released in a manner that affords it the greatest opportunity for survival.

(c) It is not a defense that the shark was caught or captured inadvertently, as bycatch, or from another fishery.

(d) For purposes of this section, there shall be a rebuttable presumption that any shark, or part of a shark, found in possession was possessed or transferred in violation of this section.

(e) Notwithstanding subsection (a), any person who holds a permit issued by the Department of Marine and Wildlife Resources to conduct scientific research shall not be subject to the penalties of this section.

24.0980 Permits.


(a) The following permits are required when applicable:

(1) Aquarium fish collection permit.

(2) Fish weir permit.

(3) Commercial trapping permit.

(4) Commercial coral harvesting permit.

(5) Commercial shell harvesting permit.

(6) Scientific collection permit.

(7) Importation permit for living aquatic organisms.

(8) Mariculture permit for culture of living aquatic organisms.

(9) Importation permit for fresh fish and shellfish products.

(b) Requests for permits shall be submitted to the director on forms provided by the department.

(c) The director may disapprove the application, or condition any required permit, if in his opinion the issuance of the permit would be contrary to 24.0304 A.S.C.A. which mandates the department to manage, protect, preserve and perpetuate the marine and wildlife resources in the Territory. Failure to abide by any required condition in a permit shall result in a violation of these rules.

24.0981 Licenses.


(a) A commercial fishing license is required for all fishermen engaged in commercial fishing in the waters of American Samoa. Persons who wish to apply for a commercial fishing license must:

(1) Continuously reside in American Samoa for at least one year,

(2) Show proof of legal residency or citizenship, and

(3) Show proof of previous fishing experience.

(b) License applications shall be submitted to the director on forms supplied by the department.

(c) A recreational fishing license may be required for fishermen engaging in subsistence or recreational fishing activities. Requirements for the license shall be detailed in the annual proclamation.

(d) A license shall be issued or renewed upon approval of the application form and payment of the required Act.

(e) The director or his designees may suspend or revoke any license for violation of any regulation under this chapter pursuant to the Administrative Procedures Act.

(f) The director may disapprove the application of any required license if in his opinion the issuance of the license would be contrary to 24.0304(1) A.S.C.A. which mandates the department to manage, protect, preserve and perpetuate the marine and wildlife resources in the Territory.

(g) Fees for licenses shall be set in the annual proclamation.

24.0982 Scientific Collection Permit.


Any person with a bona fide scientific or educational purpose may apply in writing to the director for a scientific collection permit that may allow the applicant to collect aquatic organisms using gear, in certain areas, or at certain times, otherwise prohibited by these regulations.

24.0983 Imported Fish Products.


All persons importing fresh fish and shellfish products of the same species found in American Samoan waters must first obtain a permit from the Department and shall comply with all applicable laws in this document. Failure to demonstrate compliance with these laws shall result in denial of the applicable permit(s) and forfeiture of the unlawful product in accordance with 24.0948.

24.0984 Importation of Living Aquatic Organisms.


(a) Any person wishing to import living aquatic organisms to the Territory must first obtain a permit from the department after consultation and approval by the director.

(b) Requests for permits shall be submitted to the director on forms provided by the department.

(c) The director may disapprove the application, or condition any require permit, if in his opinion the issuance of the permit would be contrary to 24.0304 A.S.C.A. which mandates the department to manage, protect, preserve and perpetuate the marine and wildlife resources in the Territory.

24.0985 Fish Aggregation Devices (FADs).


(a) Any person wishing to deploy a FAD in the waters of American Samoa must first obtain a permit to do so from the U.S. Coast Guard. Preliminary planning shall be carried out in cooperation with the department and the U.S. Coast Guard.

(b) It is unlawful to moor any vessel, line, float, net, etc. to any department FAD, unless approved by the director.

(c) It is unlawful to obstruct or intentionally hinder another vessel from fishing in the area of the department FAD.

(d) It is unlawful to tamper with any portion of the department FAD.

24.0986 Recreational Mooring Buoys.


(a) It is unlawful to fish or conduct fish or shellfish harvesting activities while moored to a recreational mooring buoy.

(b) It is unlawful to tamper with, vandalize or remove any recreational mooring buoy.

(c) Recreation mooring buoys shall be clearly marked, “No Fishing.”

24.0987 Public Access Boat Ramps.


(a) It is unlawful to intentionally hinder any vehicle or vessel from using a department constructed boat ramp.

(b) It is unlawful to leave any vehicle, vessel or trailer on a department constructed boat ramp for any period exceeding one hour.

(c) It is unlawful to tie any vessel to a department constructed boat ramp or moor any vessel in a manner that prevents access to the boat ramp.

24.0990 Enforcement.


(a) These laws are fully enforceable by ASG Department of Public Safety Officers and other authorized persons, although the primary enforcement agents will be deputized DMWR staff.

(b) Pursuant to 24.0310(a) A.S.C.A., the director and designated staff shall have full authority to issue citations, collect fines, impound vessels, vehicles and equipment, and make arrests for violations of these laws.

24.0991 Penalties.


(a) Pursuant to 24.0312(a) A.S.C.A., any person who violates any provision of these laws shall be guilty of a class B misdemeanor punishable by a fine not to exceed five hundred dollars or by a prison term in excess of fifteen days not to exceed six months, or both.

(b) Pursuant to 24.0312(b) A.S.C.A., any business entity found in violation of these laws shall be fined not less than one-thousand dollars per violation.

(c) Pursuant to 24.0312(b) A.S.C.A., any property taken or possessed in violation of these laws may be subject to forfeiture to the government pursuant to a civil proceeding in the High Court of American Samoa.