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Second hotel being fined for illegal turtle release

Cancun, Q.R. — For the second time this summer, a hotel has been found in violation for releasing turtles without proper authorization.

The Federal Attorney’s Office of Environmental Protection (Profepa) visited Krystal Grand Punta Cancún Hotel in the Cancun Hotel Zone after being notified the hotel was releasing baby turtles. Several citizen complaints said the hotel was releasing the turtles for tourist entertainment.

Through a statement, Profepa officials said they did find the hotel, located at kilometer 9.5 of the Cancun Hotel Zone, was releasing baby turtles without proper authorization. Profepo noted that the hotel had a letter of commitment from the City of Benito Juárez, but without any authorization from the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (Semarnat).

Hotel staff explained that in cases of spawning sea turtles on the beach in front of their hotel, security personnel mark the nest with tape during the night, and then at daylight, lifeguards carried out the work of recovery and transfer of eggs to a nesting pen located in the sand.

They added that the release of the babies are carried out under the Training Department of the hotel, addressed to collaborators and guests.

“Although the signing of the commitment letter with City Council is a very commendable activity, it does not exempt the said hotel from complying with the provisions of the General Law on Wildlife (LGVS) to carry out the harvesting activities of sea turtle extractive,” Profepa said in their statement.

The Federal Attorney’s Office of Environmental Protection (Profepa) said they have begun an administrative process against the hotel that could result in a fine of up to 3.5 million peso.

In August, Hotel Secrets Aura on the island of Cozumel was also fined for illegally releasing baby turtles for tourist entertainment.