6 protesters arrested after anti-fish farm demonstration in Victoria

Half a dozen protesters have been arrested after a demonstration against fish farms at a shipyard in Victoria early Wednesday.

Protesters boarded the Orca Chief vessel at Point Hope on Wednesday

A Victoria police officer escorts a protester off the Orca Chief on Wednesday morning. (Michael McArthur/CBC)

Six protesters were arrested after a demonstration against fish farms at a shipyard in Victoria early Wednesday.

The group boarded the dry-docked Orca Chief vessel in the Point Hope shipyard around 7:30 a.m. PT.

The boat is owned by Marine Harvest, which owns and operates several fish farms on the B.C. coast. 

Three of the protesters left the boat on their own about an hour after the protest began. Police and firefighters negotiated with the three others and brought them off the boat shortly after.

Victoria police said all six protesters have been arrested for mischief as well as break and enter.

Protester Noah Stewart said one of the women who was taken into custody has been arrested before for fish farm protests. 

"It's heartbreaking. I don't think that's what it should come to for us to save this coast," Stewart said. 

"I think we all need to step up and make these things heard and make these drastic steps unnecessary." 

Riccardo Regosa, general manager of the shipyard, said security will be upgraded from 12 hours a day to 24 hours a day in light of the incident.

A statement said there was no apparent damage to the ship, which is dry docked for maintenance. 

With files from Liz McArthur

​With files from CBC British Columbia

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