A Taiwanese purse seiner has been fined $US4 million dollars for illegal fishing in Kiribati's Phoenix Islands Protected Area.
Radio Kiribati reports the Kiribati Fisheries Administrative Penalty Committee imposed the fine.
The vessel is owned by a Taiwanese businessman but based in the Marshall Islands.
The Kiribati Police Maritime Unit's John Mote said the vessel was fined after being spotted fishing within a protected area of water in 2015, but had managed to avoid arrest until being caught by Kiribati authorities a few weeks ago.
Mr Mote said the captain and crew of the vessel were being held in police custody until the fines are paid.