The Scottish Sea Angling Conservation Network

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Irish skipper fined

IRISH skipper/owner Denis McCarthy, has been ordered to pay a total of £18,600 in fines and costs for a series of offences in the Celtic Sea Hake Recovery Zone.McCarthy, of Skibereen, Co. Cork pleaded guilty at Haverfordwest magistrates court on Monday in a case brought by the Marine and Fisheries Agency (MFA).

McCarthy, who had claimed he was fishing for nephrops, was fined £2,500 for using cod ends of 95 mm and 97 mm in his twin trawls - instead of the minimum 100 mm required in the Hake Recovery Zone.

He was fined £5,000 for failing to accurately record hake, angler fish and nephrops in his catch log book, a further £5,000 for failing to stow his catch of hake separately, as required, in his fish room, £500 for an unsafe boarding ladder, a further £4,700 for the value of the fish, and costs of £920.

MFA chief executive Nigel Gooding said after the case: “When fishermen blatantly cheat on the rules, which are designed to conserve fish stocks, they also have a direct impact on the vast majority of fishermen who are operating legally.”

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