Repeat Offender Banned From Fishing for 5 years

Two men, a 49-year-old and a 58-year-old, were sentenced in Dubbo Local Court on Friday 2 July 2021.

The two men were apprehended on Saturday 27 June 2020 on the Macquarie River, downstream of Warren NSW following a covert surveillance operation involving NSW DPI Fisheries officers and NSW Police Rural Crime Unit officers.

Director for Fisheries compliance, Dr Andrew Moriarty said that seven fish traps, nine Golden Perch, a Murray Cod, a grapnel and a boat, motor and trailer were seized during the operation from the men.

“Both men faced Court on charges under the Fisheries Management Act 1994 for unlawfully using traps, possessing fish illegally taken as well as using excess and unattended lines,” said Dr Moriarty.

“The 49-year-old Dubbo man was ordered to pay $3300 in fines and costs and issued two 7-month terms of imprisonment to be served by way of intensive correction order.

“He was also given a Prohibition Order preventing him from fishing in NSW inland waters west of the Great Dividing Range for a period of 5 years.

“The prohibition order also prohibits the man being in possession of any rigged hand lines, being in possession of specified inland fish species, being in possession of nets or traps and being on board any boat that has fishing gear or being used to carry out any fishing activities in inland waters over the five-year period.

“The 58-year-old Wongarbon man was ordered to pay $4900 in fines and costs.”

Dr Moriarty advised that this sort of behaviour will not be tolerated, and Fisheries Officers will continue to crack down on illegal fishing activity.

“The blatant disregard for fisheries rules and regulations has serious consequences especially if you are a repeat offender. Not being able to fish for 5 years is a significant impost for anyone that likes to fish, plus there’s the added deterrent of hefty penalties if these individuals are found breaching the prohibition order.

The maximum penalty for breaching a prohibition order is $22,000 and/or 12 months’ imprisonment.

“Fisheries rules and regulations are in place to protect and conserve fish stocks and fishing opportunities for current and future generations, and this type of illegal fishing detracts from all the hard work fisheries officers, and the community do to ensure access to healthy fish stocks for the community of NSW”

To report illegal fishing, call the Fishers Watch phone line 1800 043 536 or report online via the FishSmart NSW app or at www.dpi.nsw.gov.au

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