Sea Shepherd France, the French branch of the famous marine animals protection organization, has announced that it will sue a restaurant in Levant Island, near the city of Marseille, in southern France, for allegedly exploiting an endangered species of shark. The organisation learned about this after employees of the restaurant Le Gambaro posted on social media selfies with the corpse of a dead shark in the restaurant. In the photo, the bleeding shark is held by three people in the kitchens. It is believed that he is either a Mako or a blue-skinned shark.

The daily Var-Matin said that the shark at the restaurant measured 1.2 meters and weighed 18 kilograms, and was dead when he was caught accidentally. The restaurant, which is used to working with local fisherpeople, receives the killed fishes of the day. An investigation has been initiated by the French Office of Biodiversity to find out what species the shark belongs to and understand how it could have been caught by fisherpeople.

Sea Shepherd said, “A few days after this report, we discover that in 2019, the Gambaro already had Mako shark on the menu. The species has been strictly protected and prohibited for sale since 2015. After years of battle and negotiations, the protection law is finally adopted but the restaurateur continues to pose proudly with these protected species via macabre staging and boasts at the same time of offering ‘products from local and sustainable fishing’. Our complaint for illegal marketing of protected species is being drafted, but we also hope that informed customers of this kind of unscrupulous restaurants will draw the consequences to encourage them to use a minimum of ethics in their practices.”

The restaurant denied the accusations and said that it will no longer serve the dish until the national park concludes its investigations.

“Originally from Catalonia, but resident in the UK for several decades, Jordi is a vegan zoologist and author, who has been involved in different aspects of animal protection for many years. In addition to scientific research, he has worked mostly as an undercover investigator, animal welfare consultant, and animal protection campaigner. He has been an ethical vegan since 2002, and in 2020 he secured the legal protection of all ethical vegans in Great Britain from discrimination in a landmark employment tribunal case that was discussed all over the world. He is also the author of the book, ‘Ethical Vegan: a personal and political journey to change the world’.