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Crime & Courts

Fishing captain fined for polluting Southeast Alaska waters

A fishing boat captain who dumped sandblast waste into Southeast Alaska waters was ordered to pay $10,000 and perform 40 hours of community service.

Federal prosecutors say 32-year-old Brannon Finney of Bellingham, Washington, dumped waste to avoid a $1,460 disposal fee.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Matthew Scoble on Wednesday also ordered 18 months of probation for Finney and a public apology.

Prosecutors say Finney’s boat had been sandblasted for repainting. On June 15, 2017, she and crew members left Wrangell for Petersburg carrying 16,000 pounds of sandblast waste.

A camera crew filming for a possible television reality showed the vessel dumping part of the load into Sumner Strait.

An Alaska state trooper questioned Finney in Petersburg about the material she’d carried out of Wrangell. Prosecutors say Finney acknowledged dumping it.