San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

TV’s ‘MacGyver’ calls Costa Rica a ‘death sentence’ for Sea Shepherd conservationist

Richard Dean Anderson fears that not even the trademark handiness of TV’s “MacGyver” can save his friend this time. Anderson, the man who played 1980s ultra-resourceful super spy MacGyver, turned this week to the media to ask for help solving his latest predicament: saving Paul Watson from what Anderson deems certain death in Costa Rica.

Watson, founder of marine conservation group Sea Shepherd, faces extradition to Costa Rica from Germany, after he was arrested resulting from a high-seas confrontation over shark finning in 2002. He was accused of attempted shipwrecking and damage to property. The 61-year-old Watson contends that if he’s sent to Costa Rica to face trial he will be assassinated by shark finners.

“To be extradited back to Costa Rica would be a death sentence for Paul, literally,” Anderson echoed in a YouTube video. “The Taiwanese shark-fin mafia could get to him. Captain Watson wouldn’t even get a day in court.”

Model Pamela Anderson, former “The Price is Right” TV show host Bob Barker, billionaire founder of Paul Mitchell hair products, John Paul DeJoria, and child actor Zach Callison also produced videos this week in support of Watson.

German authorities arrested Watson in May at the Frankfort airport, after a Costa Rican international arrest warrant was issued by the Prosecutor’s Office last October.

The stars in their videos describe Watson in heroic terms, with Barker saying that Watson has done more for “marine life than anyone else in history.” And if Watson is jailed, it could mean even more deaths for whales, sharks, dolphins, seals and endangered tuna, he said.

Said Barker: “Please urge the governments of Germany and Costa Rica to free Captain Watson now.”

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