16 USC 1827a: Prohibition on sale of billfish
Result 1 of 1
16 USC 1827a: Prohibition on sale of billfish Text contains those laws in effect on June 17, 2024

§1827a. Prohibition on sale of billfish

(a) Prohibition

No person shall offer for sale, sell, or have custody, control, or possession of for purposes of offering for sale or selling billfish or products containing billfish.

(b) Penalty

For purposes of section 1858(a) of this title, a violation of this section shall be treated as an act prohibited by section 1857 of this title.

(c) Exemptions for traditional fisheries and markets

(1) Subsection (a) does not apply to billfish caught by US fishing vessels and landed and retained in the State of Hawaii or Pacific Insular Areas as defined in section 1802(35) of this title.

(2) Subsection (a) does not apply to billfish landed by foreign fishing vessels in the Pacific Insular Areas when the foreign caught billfish is exported to non-US markets or retained within Hawaii and the Pacific Insular Areas for local consumption.

(d) Billfish defined

In this section the term "billfish"-

(1) means any fish of the species-

(A) Makaira nigricans (blue marlin);

(B) Kajikia audax (striped marlin);

(C) Istiompax indica (black marlin);

(D) Istiophorus platypterus (sailfish);

(E) Tetrapturus angustirostris (shortbill spearfish);

(F) Kajikia albida (white marlin);

(G) Tetrapturus georgii (roundscale spearfish);

(H) Tetrapturus belone (Mediterranean spearfish); and

(I) Tetrapturus pfluegeri (longbill spearfish); and

(2) does not include the species Xiphias gladius (swordfish).

( Pub. L. 112–183, §4, Oct. 5, 2012, 126 Stat. 1422 ; Pub. L. 115–228, §1, Aug. 2, 2018, 132 Stat. 1628 .)

Editorial Notes


Section was enacted as part of the Billfish Conservation Act of 2012 and not as part of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act which comprises this chapter.


2018-Subsec. (c)(1). Pub. L. 115–228 inserted "and retained" after "landed".

Statutory Notes and Related Subsidiaries


Pub. L. 112–183, §2, Oct. 5, 2012, 126 Stat. 1422 , provided that: "Congress finds the following:

"(1) The United States carefully regulates its domestic fisheries for billfish and participates in international fishery management bodies in the Atlantic and Pacific.

"(2) Global billfish populations have declined significantly, however, because of overfishing primarily through retention of bycatch by non-United States commercial fishing fleets.

"(3) Ending the importation of foreign-caught billfish for sale in the United States aligns with U.S. management measures of billfish and protects the significant economic benefits to the U.S. economy of recreational fishing and marine commerce and the traditional cultural fisheries."