Fri | Dec 2, 2022

Brazil expels US fishing tour company from Indigenous land

Published:Thursday | November 24, 2022 | 12:09 AM

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP):

Federal courts in Brazil have ordered a New Jersey-based fishing tourism company to leave a remote Indigenous area of the Amazon after prosecutors filed charges of operating without government authorisation and manipulating Indigenous people, which is illegal in the country.

The attorney general’s office in Santarem alleged in the civil lawsuit that the company Acute Angling invaded an Indigenous territory where it set up a luxury fishing lodge without either proper consultation with Indigenous communities or approval from federal Indigenous and environmental agencies.

Preliminary injunctions in both lower and upper courts ordered Acute Angling to stop operating in the vast and isolated Wayamu region, an Indigenous territory roughly the size of Ireland.

“The activity as far is known, has no authorisation from the government for its operation. It is about the exploitation of economic activity within Indigenous lands that, to be legitimate, must be preceded by prior free and informed consultation with the Indigenous peoples,” Judge Clécio Alves de Araújo wrote on September 28, in a ruling later upheld by a higher court.

The Associated Press contacted Acute Angling´s owner, Paul Reiss, by phone and email. Reiss declined to answer questions, but in legal filings the company has previously denied any wrongdoing.