Sixteen fishermen were intercepted just before noon yesterday in neighbouring Suriname in an area called Bigipan.
The men in separate vessels reported that the scoutoo (police) were disguised as sea pirates and some were masked.
After shooting up in the air, the vessels were taken ashore and grounded. Twelve were taken in for questioning and items on board the boats confiscated.
Reports are that a few Guyanese are among the crew of mostly Surinamese fishermen.
The Surinamese authorities have not confirmed any move of this kind but when contacted, a source indicated that the officers may have been involved in a random undercover operation.
This, he said, is part of an intensified policing of the waterways to intercept vessels carrying pirates, illegal operators and smuggled items.
However, a few fishermen who were released with their licence intact are furious and fearful of how the men operated.
In an interview with the Surinamese media, they blame the police for damaging their vessels and submerging their engines. The fishermen questioned why the police came masked and disguised if they were involved in a legitimate operation. They were able to salvage a few items including outboard engines after the raid.
After the bloody pirate attacks of May 3, last, that left over a dozen fishermen dead, authorities in Guyana and Suriname have intensified security along the waterways bordering the two neighbouring countries.
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