Two fishing boats linked to ‘Codfather’ sink in New Bedford Harbor

The fishing vessels Dinah Jane and Nemesis, both out of New Bedford, are sunk at their mooring in Homer’s Wharf, Monday, Feb. 5. —Courtesy U.S. Coast Guard

The 65-foot Dinah Jane and the 67-foot Nemesis were discovered sunken at Homer’s Wharf in New Bedford Harbor very early Monday morning, after a radio beacon alerted the Coast Guard, according to a press release. The boats are owned by Carlos Rafael’s company, Petty Officer Andrew Barresi told The Times. Rafael pleaded guilty to fishing-related charges in federal court last year. He is regionally known as “the Codfather.”

The two steel-hulled boats were rafted together, according to Barresi.

The New Bedford Fire Department was first to arrive on scene, and deployed booms after observing signs of a slick, the report states. The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection was among the agencies to later arrive on scene. The two fishing boats are believed by the Coast Guard to have a fuel capacity of 9,500 gallons. Cleanup and an investigation are ongoing.

“I can’t ever remember two vessels going down like this before,” port director Ed Anthes-Washburn told The Times. Anthes-Washburn said the boats are in about 18 to 20 feet of water, and that his office assisted the fire department with the initial boom deployment. Frank Corp. Environmental Services is managing the spill now. Working in coordination with Tucker Roy Marine Towing divers, they’ve stopped the flow of petroleum, he said.