Man Whose Boat Sank in Columbia River Must Pay $144K in Restitut - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Man Whose Boat Sank in Columbia River Must Pay $144K in Restitution

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 KENNEWICK, WA - A man whose fishing trawler sank in the Columbia River last year will have to pay $144,000 in restitution.   

Brandon Traner pleaded guilty last month to abandoning a derelict vessel and discharge of polluting matters into state waters. This is the Attorney General's first derelict vessel conviction in Washington. Traner was sentenced to 20 days in jail and two years of probation. 

The restitution ordered at Tuesday's hearing will go to replenishing funds from the Department of Natural Resources and Ecology that were used to remove Traner's vessel. The DNR Derelict Vessel Removal Program will receive $60,0000 and $84,000 will go to reimburse the Ecology Coastal Protection Fund. 

"Derelict vessels hurt the environment and cost taxpayers millions," Attorney General Bob Ferguson said. "This conviction sends a strong message: My office will track down environmental criminals and hold them accountable." 

Ferguson has made environmental crimes a top priority. He filed two other derelict vessel charges in January in Pierce and Kitsap Counties.