Whale killed in rogue tribal hunt

SEATTLE, Sept. 9 (UPI) -- Five members of the Makah Nation tribe were taken into custody after allegedly killing a California gray whale off the coast of Washington.

The whale died Saturday, less than 12 hours after being shot and harpooned in the Strait of Juan de Fuca two miles from shore northeast of Neah Bay, The Seattle Times reported Sunday.


The killing, not sanctioned by the tribe or the federal government, shocked environmentalists and tribal leaders alike, the Times reported.

"I don't know why they did this. It's terrible," said John McCarty, a former member of the tribe's whaling commission and an advocate of the Makah Nation's right to resume whaling under an 1855 treaty.

The suspects, in the custody of the Makah tribal police, could face civil penalties of up to $20,000 each under the Marine Mammal Protection Act, the Times reported.

Latest Headlines