Fish­ers learn the hard way

Joondalup Times - - NEWS - Mark Don­ald­son www.face­book.com/ Wan­nerooJoon­dalupTimes TELL US WHAT YOU THINK

YOU can’t take ex­cess abalone, throw some back and then claim you’re un­der the bag limit.

And you can’t pull up a fam­ily mem­ber’s cray­pots if you’ve al­ready pulled up your own cray­pots that day.

It is not wise to lie to Fish­eries of­fi­cers ei­ther.

These were some of the les­sons learned in Joon­dalup Mag­is­trates Court on Au­gust 3 in a ses­sion dom­i­nated by fish poach­ing hear­ings that led to a mag­is­trate hand­ing out more than $24,000 in fines across nearly a dozen cases.

The big­gest penalty was for Ed­uardo Rossi, who pulled up more than the al­lowed four cray­pots five times while fish­ing with his son off Ocean Reef boat har­bour last Novem­ber.

Rossi, who had 20 years fish­ing ex­pe­ri­ence, was caught with 16 lob­sters on one of the boat­ing trips, lead­ing to a $4000 manda­tory penalty.

He said the ex­tra pots were his wife’s and he did not know that what he was do­ing was wrong.

Mag­is­trate Deen Pot­ter fined him a fur­ther $2500, tak­ing his penalty to $6500.

In an­other hear­ing, Yang Zhao ad­mit­ted to tak­ing too many abalone from Ocean Reef and then ly­ing to a Fish­eries of­fi­cer.

He ex­ceeded the bag limit by 29 shell­fish on Fe­bru­ary 3, but told the court he in­tended to take the bag limit and then throw the smaller abalone back into the wa­ter.

The Fish­eries prose­cu­tor said any abalone re­moved from the reef coun­tPERTH ed to­wards the bag limit, re­gard­less of whether a fisher kept them.

Zhao also lied when he said some of the ex­cess abalone in his pos­ses­sion were not his. He claimed some of them were caught by his mother-in-law, who was sit­ting on the beach. He was fined $2620. In a De­cem­ber 9 in­ci­dent at Burns Beach, an of­fi­cer asked abalone catcher Naibin Li to pro­duce a current abalone li­cence.

He gave the of­fi­cer a false name and pro­vided a li­cence that was not his.

He ad­mit­ted to giv­ing false de­tails and not hav­ing a li­cence.

He apol­o­gised in a let­ter to the court, say­ing it was a “silly idea” af­ter his li­cence had ex­pired. Mr Pot­ter fined him $1500.

Other fines in­cluded $5620 for Ren Wu, who took un­der­sized abalone and ex­ceeded the bag limit by 90 off Yanchep on Jan­uary 13.

Also in Yanchep, Con­rad Thomas Waikari did not have a li­cence and was fish­ing out of sea­son when he took an abalone, a sea urchin and three un­der­size lob­sters on March 1. He was fined $4550.

At Burns Beach on May 5, Clyde Tua and Warren Tarehu Grey, took 31 abalone be­tween them out of sea­son.

Tua was fined $730. Grey was fined $700.

On March 13 at Ocean Reef, Pa­trick Dun­can Healy took 28 abalone out­side sea­son and was fined $1840.

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