From the news: Japanese Whalers Deny Whale Meat Thefts

Japanese whalers say crew members accused of stealing whale meat have been cleared of any crime.

Greenpeace said the seamen had been illegally selling large amounts of whale meat on their return to Japan from whaling in Antarctic waters.

Japanese police have been investigating the claims.

But the whaling company Kyodo Senpaku Kaisha Ltd and the Institute of Cetacean Research (ICR) on Friday said their own investigations had cleared the employees of wrongdoing.

It followed the release of two Japanese Greenpeace members who, it was claimed, were looking into the sale of whale meat but had themselves been charged with stealing the goods.

"The allegations were made by activists from the anti-whaling organisation, Greenpeace Japan, who themselves (allegedly) stole whale meat from the Aomori branch of Seino Transportation Ltd," Kyodo Senpaku Kaisha Ltd president Kazuo Yamamura said in a statement.

"The Greenpeace activists claimed that the meat they stole was `proof' of large-scale whale meat thefts.

"Kyodo Senpaku and the ICR have conducted a thorough investigation of the claims by Greenpeace and found that all of their allegations are false.

"The seafarers involved have been cleared of all claims made against them."

Mr Yamamura said his company reached the same conclusion as the Tokyo District Public Prosecutor's Office, which found the whale meat was not stolen but given as a gift to crew members engaged in the processing line.

He said there was no truth to allegations of a widespread whale meat embezzlement ring.

Check out the article from The Age.

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