Weather for San José:
High 28° / Low 19°
Click here for six-day forecast for 16 communities across Costa Rica!
Banco BAC
Banco BCR
Banco Nacional
Banco Popular
Banco Scotiabank

Celebrity Star Power Helps Paul Watson Fight Extradition to Costa Rica

Share this article

Kelly Slater in 2010

Members of the glitterati are leveraging their star power to help the founder of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society and star of Animal Planet’s Whale Wars to avoid extradition to Costa Rica. Paul Watson is currently free on bail in Germany, awaiting court proceedings which could bring him back to respond to charges of reckless endangerment of a vessel at sea with intent to cause a shipwreck. That incident dates back to 2002.

According to environmental and celebrity site Ecorazzi, pro surfing legend Kelly Slater has officially joined the circle of celebrities rallying in support of Mr. Watson. An email cited by Ecorazzi from Mr. Slater explains that the championship surfer is concerned that increased connections and investments from China and Taiwan in Costa Rica essentially amount to hush money with regard to illegal practices such as irresponsible fishing and shark finning. Mr. Slater believes that this situation is exacerbated by a smokescreen provided by our country’s biodiversity and ecotourism industry.

Mr. Slater concludes with:

“If a light is shined on these [China and Taiwan] connections, their ability to pull secret levers of power will evaporate.”

Costa Rica severed diplomatic ties with Taiwan back in 2007, during the second Oscar Arias administration. The Costa Rica Star has recently touched on this subject on a report about China’s growing influence not just in our country, but also in Caribbean nations like the Bahamas, Dominica and Jamaica. Former President and Nobel Peace Laureate Oscar Arias broke relations with Taiwan and courted the People’s Republic of China (PRC) during the 2008 Summer Olympics, after China had built extensive infrastructure to accommodate the Summer Games. Our new National Stadium is a gift from the PRC.

The Costa Rica Star has also reported on the recent trial of a Taiwanese boat captain who was caught with evidence of shark fin poaching in our Pacific coast last year. The ship arrest of the Fishing Vessel Hung Chi Fu took place in March of 2011 in Puntarenas. The crew of the FV Hung Chi Fu was busy offloading a catch of Hexanchus griesus, blunt-nosed grey sharks (also called cow sharks), which are abundant in the Pacific coast off Costa Rica. The H. griesus catch of the FV Hung Chi Fu was within legal limits, but it was also used to conceal a villainous catch of blue sharks with their fins hacked off. Captain Tsai Yu Jen will now have to pay 62 million colones, about $124,000.

Other celebrities who have vowed to support Mr. Watson in recent days include the Red Hot Chili Peppers and the iconic pinups the Barbi Twins, famous for their calendars and appearances in Playboy. One of Mr. Watson’s former wives, Lisa DiStefano, has also posed in Playboy magazine. Two vessels in Sea Shepherd’s fleet are named after film and television celebrities: French film beauty Brigitte Bardot and American television game host Bob Barker (from The Price is Right). Both Madame Bardot and Mr. Barker have contributed millions of dollars to the Sea Shepherd organization.

A recent in-depth look at the life of Mr. Watson printed by the esteemed Canadian publication McLean’s indicates that even musician Bryan Adams has joined the glitterati in support of Mr. Watson. The McLean’s profile ends with a quote from Canadian naturalist author and World War II veteran Farley Mowat about Mr. Watson:

“He’s the nearest thing I’ve ever had to hero.”

Print Friendly

Related Articles

Gevalia Adds Costa Rica Coffee to Its Special Reserve Lineup

Gevalia® Kaffe unveiled a new Special Reserve line of coffee that includes four premium, 100-percent [...]

Exploring Costa Rica on a Triumph Motorcycle

Kaycee Landsaw (@kaycee_landsaw) is a renowned photographer based out of Salt Lake City, Utah whose work [...]

Pickleball? U.S. Couple in San Ramón Offer Regular Play Sessions

By Wendy Anders The U.S. Pickleball Association (USAPA), based in Surprise, AZ, describes pickleball as [...]

English Teacher Crowned Miss Costa Rica Amidst Controversy

Carolina Rodriguez, a 27-year old English teacher and linguist from Alajuela, is the new Miss Costa Rica. [...]

Sexy Former Legislator Will Host Gossip TV Show in Costa Rica

Andrea Morales Diaz, a former Costa Rica legislator whose short political career was filled with [...]

Largest Cigar in the World Rolled for Fidel Castro’s Birthday

Cuban cigar maker Jose Castelar completed on Friday the world’s largest cigar, a stogie 90 meters [...]

International Calling Bonus for Mother’s Day in Costa Rica

Costa Rican expats worldwide will receive a gift of $3 Voice Credit on every purchase of $20 minimum on [...]

Tantric Massage in Costa Rica: Therapy or Prostitution?

In Costa Rica, there is a place where men and women, individually or as couples, can be gently touched [...]