Six Islanders fined for fishing violations

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MONCTON – Six Islanders have been fined nearly $30,000 for illegal fishing.

Officials are worried about the use of female rock crab in the lobster fishery.

On Nov. 26, four Prince Edward Island residents were fined for unlawfully fishing lobster during a closed time.

Ben Joseph Gaudet of Tignish, pleaded guilty to unlawfully fishing for lobster in lobster fishing area 24 during a closed time. He was fined $2,000.

Donald Jos Harper of Tignish, pleaded guilty to unlawfully fishing for lobster in lobster fishing areas 23 and 24 during a closed time. He was fined $3,250.

Blake Joseph Harper of Elmsdale, pleaded guilty to unlawfully fishing for lobster in lobster fishing area 24 during a closed time. He was fined $4,000.

Wade Jos Gavin of Tignish, pleaded guilty to unlawfully fishing for lobster in lobster fishing area 24 during a closed time. He was fined $10,000.

On Nov. 18, 2013, Richard Bruce Gormley of Murray Harbour, pleaded guilty to fishing lobster traps that did not have valid tags attached, near Pictou Island, Nova Scotia. He was fined $9,000 and his catch, valued at $2,000, was confiscated.  He also received a one-week suspension for the start of the 2014 lobster fishing season.

Rock crab

On Nov. 26, 2013, Andrew Williams of Richmond, pleaded guilty to fishing without a licence and to fishing without a vessel. He was fined $1,250.

In a statement issued Thursday, the Department of Fisheries and Oceans said the Government of Canada is “committed to safeguarding the long-term health and productivity of Canada’s fisheries resources, and the habitat that supports them, for generations to come.”

Fisheries and Oceans Canada has a mandate to protect and conserve marine resources and to prosecute offenders under the Fisheries Act. It ensures and promotes compliance with the Act and other laws and regulations through a combination of land, air, and sea patrols, as well as education and awareness activities.

To report suspicious fishing activity or habitat violations contact the nearest Fisheries and Oceans Canada office or call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

Organizations: Islanders, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Department of Fisheries and Oceans Crime Stoppers

Geographic location: Tignish, Prince Edward Island, Elmsdale Canada Murray Harbour Pictou Island Nova Scotia Richmond

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