The Isles of Scilly Inshore Fisheries & Conservation Authority (IFCA) has successfully prosecuted the owner and master of the crabbing vessel Harriet-Eve.
The case, heard at Truro Magistrates Court on December 4th 2018, found defendants guilty of charges including fishing within the Isles of Scilly Inshore Fisheries and Conservation district. The defendants were given fines and costs totalling £64,160.
The case was brought following monitoring of suspicious vessel activity by IFCA Officers. Electronic location data showed that the vessel had fished within the district on several occasions during October 2017.
Further investigation by the Marine Management Organisation showed that during the same period the vessel had not been properly completing or sending their logbook information. A total of £25,000 of shellfish were caught during this period.
The Harriet-Eve TO50, a 14.97-metre vessel, is in excess of the 11-metre maximum permitted to fish within the waters managed by Scilly’s IFCA. The IFCA is responsible for a district that extends out to 6 nautical miles with the aim of ensuring that fishing activities in this area are environmentally sustainable. Enforcement is a key part of managing resources for the benefit of the fishing industry and the health of marine ecosystems over the long term.
The owner of the vessel, Rowse Fishing Ltd of Newbridge, was ordered to pay fines and costs totalling £42,670; Richard Carroll of Newlyn, the vessel’s master, was ordered to pay a total of £21,490 in fines and costs.
Isles of Scilly IFCA Enforcement and Research Officer Rick Pender said: “It is rare for us to prosecute an offence of this seriousness in the Isles of Scilly. Our aim is to ensure that fisheries are low impact and managed in a way that is consistent with shared economic, social and employment benefits.
"This prosecution should send out a message that we take marine conservation and sustainable harvesting of fish and shellfish extremely seriously on the Isles of Scilly."