Not one to bow to authority, Paul Watson, has taken his own approach to whale conservation for many years now and he shows no sign of stopping.
A co-founder of Greenpeace and subsequently conservation society the Sea Shepherd, Watson has made it his mission to protect cetaceans from the tip of the (usually Japanese) harpoon, as well as targeting illegal shark fin poaching and the clubbing of arctic club seals. Many of these exploits have been documented on the popular Animal Planet show Whale Wars but lately he has sprung into the limelight after being arrested for a supposed crime committed a decade ago.
Detained in Frankfurt at the behest of the Costa Rican authorities who want him extradited on an old charge of ‘violating ships traffic’, he has been accused of putting a ship’s crew in danger.
Had he not been released on bail, delaying the extradition, Watson may very well have found himself a target for the Costa Rican ‘shark fin mafia’ who had previously put a hit on him. Not out of the woods yet, Watson must remain in Germany until a decision has been made regarding the pending extradition.
One thing’s for sure though, Watson has a multitude of equally passionate supporters who have rallied to his side, ensuring this popular skipper won’t go down without a fight. Let’s hope the Costa Rican authorities see sense and drop all charges so that Watson can get back to doing what he does best – Saving Whales!