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Sea Shepherd Docks in Australia After a "Successful" Season [VIDEO]

Mar 20, 2013 10:19 AM EDT

After three months of fighting off Japanese whalers in the Antarctic, the conservation group Sea Shepherd docked in Australia on March 20.

Only this time, the captain was missing.

Paul Watson, the group's founder, left the fleet before it arrived due to fear of arrest. However, the precaution seems to have been unnecessary as Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus told Parliament that there would have been no attempt to arrest Watson.

Dreyfus did not reveal, however, whether Japan - or any other country, for that matter - requested his extradition. Dreyfus attributed this to Australia's long-standing tradition for withholding such details.

This is good news for Watson who is currently avoiding the United States due to a ruling last month by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to reinstate a lawsuit by Japanese sailors.

The court called the activist group pirates and said the whaling group would most likely win an order to ban Sea Shepherd from interfering in any future whale hunts.

Sea Shepherd has found a friend in high places, however, in Attorney Robert F. Kennedy Jr.

Citing the International Whaling Commission's 1986 moratorium on all commercial whaling, Kennedy said in a press conference that the real pirates are the Japanese. He, like Sea Shepherd, rejects the claim from the Japanese that their Institute for Cetacean Research uses the hunted whales for scientific purposes but rather believes it is a commercial entity.

"If you are violating international law on the high seas, you are a pirate," Kennedy said.

Despite these setbacks, Sea Shepherd's spokesperson Bob Brown announced that the latest season of whale defense has been among their most successful.

"It's been the lowest whale kill in Japanese Antarctic whaling history," he states in a video taken by Reuters.

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