Wiffen pleaded guilty at Hastings Magistrates’ Court. The 29-year-old was fined £40 and imposed a £34 victim surcharge and £65 in costs.
The penalties totalled £139 – more than 4 times the cost of a £30, 12-month, 2-rod trout and coarse fishing licence, and 3 times that of a £45 3-rod equivalent fishing licence.*
Enforcement team leader for the Environment Agency, Lesley Robertson, said:
This case shows we pursue offenders through the courts and won’t hesitate to take enforcement action where anglers break rules. Anyone found fishing illegally may face prosecution and a fine of up to £2,500.
All anglers need a valid Environment Agency fishing licence. The money raised through the sales of fishing licences is re-invested and enables us to improve all fisheries, including rivers, for anglers and for wildlife.
Our fisheries enforcement officers routinely undertake licence checks, and we urge anyone with information about illegal fishing to contact us on 0800 807060.
Licences now run 365 days from the day of purchase offering 12 full months of fishing.
Any angler aged 13 or over, fishing on a river, canal or still water needs a licence. A 1-day licence costs from just £6, and an annual licence costs from just £30. Concessions are available. Junior licences are free for 13 to 16-year-olds.