Recent court cases bought by Environment Agency Wales against those fishing illegally have resulted in over £1,500 in fines and costs.

Anglers who fish without a licence or who break by-law regulations are damaging the sport. The improvements made to fish habitats and stocks are part funded directly from rod licence sales. The Agency is reminding all anglers to get their licence in time for the new season as the money goes straight back into the sport.

The £1,500 fines and costs were awarded against six people at Abergavenny Magistrates Court on the 16 January 2007. The details are as follows:

The following individuals were caught fishing without a licence on 5 July
2006 at Peterstone Lakes, Newport:

Dwain Pompey of Beeston Close, Sandringham Road, London was fined £150 with £70 in costs. The case was proved in his absence.

Nicholas Suller of The Uplands, Rogerstone, Gwent was fined £100 with £70 in costs. The case was proved in his absence.

Ashley D’Rozario of Dessmuir Road, Tremorfa, Cardiff was fined £100 with £70 in costs. He had pleaded guilty by post.

Daniel Grace of Welland Circle, Bettws, Newport was fined £50 and a further £150 on a second offence of failing to give his name to an Agency Water Bailiff. He was also ordered to pay £70 in costs.

Joseph Alexander Moore of Willow Close, Caldicot was fined £100 with £70 in costs. He had been seen fishing on the right bank of the River Usk at Pant-Y-Goitre Bridge, Abergavenny on 5 July 2006. The case was proved in his absence.

The Agency also prosecuted Phillip Morgan of Troy Way, Monmouth, Gwent who was seen fishing at The Island Pool on the River Wye at Monmouth on 23 June 2006. He was fined £200 for fishing for salmon or migratory trout by means other than an artificial lure out of season. This is very damaging to the future of salmon fishing in Wales as it has an effect on the stocks.

During the investigation, he obstructed an Agency Water Bailiff in making an authorised search and was fined £400. He was also ordered to pay £70 in costs and the court ordered forfeiture of the fishing equipment, seized by the Bailiff at the time of the offences. The case was proved in absence.

Following these latest cases, Andy Schofield speaking for the Agency said:

“The income we get from rod licences is vital to our work in improving the quality of angling in Wales and maintaining fish stocks and habitats.

“Our bailiffs regularly check to ensure that fishery rules and regulations are being observed, and this will continue. We must also protect vulnerable fish stocks from exploitation during the close season on rivers.”