FAM­ILY STRANDED BY BOAT THEFT

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - FRONT PAGE - Mark Mur­ray

A PORT Dou­glas cou­ple has been forced to lay off staff af­ter the brazen theft of a fish­ing boat.

Com­mer­cial fish­ing fam­ily Jodi and Bret Deu­ble had a spe­cial­ist trout dory stolen from the ma­rina on Tues­day morn­ing, leav­ing their busi­ness reel­ing on the eve of Christ­mas.

Ms Deu­ble said the miss­ing boat, 50 horse­power Yamaha out­board and trailer, worth be­tween $30,000-$40,000, has put them un­der se­ri­ous fi­nan­cial strain.

“The most dis­tress­ing thing is we’ve had to put a crew mem­ber off be­cause there is no dory for him,” she said.

“Hav­ing to do that to a long term crew mem­ber is just shat­ter­ing. It’s meant to be Christ­mas but peo­ple just don’t care do they? We are not happy about it.”

The dory is one of two that ac­com­pa­nies the FV Con­damine out to sea. The boat’s wild caught fish fil­lets are hugely pop­u­lar with Port Dou­glas res­i­dents and tourists who buy fresh off the pub­lic jetty.

The team re­turned to the wa­ter yes­ter­day to top up their catch ahead of a busy preChrist­mas sale on Satur­day.

Ms Deu­ble said it was ‘vi­tal’ they re­cov­ered the dory, which is used to fish ar­eas of the Great Bar­rier Reef the main ves­sel can’t reach.

“It’s a pretty unique dory. It was a for­mer cray­fish boat that has been con­verted to fish trout, so there are iden­ti­fi­able fea­tures,” she said.

“It’s not the first time things have gone miss­ing down there, that’s for sure.

“We’ve had fuel stolen, but noth­ing as brazen as hook­ing up a dory and tak­ing off.”

If any­one has seen a 5m boat, white in colour, with GQU-2 writ­ten on the side, or a pow­der blue trailer with reg­is­tra­tion num­ber EM2074, con­tact Crime Stop­pers on 1800 333 000.

“Any bit of in­for­ma­tion would be very help­ful,” Ms Deu­ble said.

Pic­ture: GIZELLE GHIDELLA

Claire and Jodi Deu­ble are very dis­ap­pointed some­one stole their dory so close to Christ­mas.

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