Eight illegal fishermen ordered to pay £4,700 in fines and costs
- Credit: Copyright: Archant 2019
People caught fishing illegally in Norfolk, Cambridgeshire and Bedfordshire have been ordered to pay more than £4,700 in fines and costs.
Fines issued during a day of sentencing at Luton Magistrates' Court in March ranged from £265 to £440, while each angler was ordered to pay £127.47 in costs and a victim surcharge of between £30 and £44.
Those appearing before magistrates included:
- Two people caught at Fendicks Fishery in Thetford.
- One person caught at Middle Level, St Germans, Cambridgeshire, and another at Brampton on the River Great Ouse in Cambridgeshire
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- Two people caught on the River Ivel at Manor Farm, Sandy, in Cambridgeshire
- One person caught at Loughton Lodge, Bedfordshire, and another at Chestnut Pool at Langford, Bedfordshire
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The total amount of fines, court costs and victim surcharges came to £4,726.
The Environment Agency said the majority of offences were identified during routine patrols and partnership patrols.
Environment Agency fisheries team leader Ian Hirst said: "Our Fisheries Enforcement Officers regularly patrol waters across the region.
"During August, September and October 2018, our officers reported nine anglers for fishing offences across Norfolk, Cambridgeshire and Bedfordshire.
"Those offences were investigated and on March 28, 2019 Luton Magistrates' Court found nine guilty of fishing without a rod licence.
"Our Officers are deemed to be a constable for the purposes of enforcing the Salmon and Freshwater Fisheries Act 1975, or any order or byelaw under it.
"These cases show that anyone found fishing illegally or fails to provide their name and address to an Officer carrying out their duties may face prosecution and a fine.
"The money raised through the sales of rod licences is re-invested and enables us to improve all fisheries including rivers for anglers. Our officers routinely undertake licence checks and we urge anyone with information about illegal fishing activities to contact us."
Illegal fishing should be reported to the Environment Agency's Incident Hotline on 0800 80 70 60.