Anglers in Warwickshire warned not to get caught out - The Leamington Observer

Anglers in Warwickshire warned not to get caught out

Leamington Editorial 15th Aug, 2023 Updated: 15th Aug, 2023   0

ANGLERS are being warned to think twice before casting off without a licence.

Two friends from Birmingham have landed themselves with penalties of a combined £790 for a day’s fishing trip to Stratford – in the close season and fishing without a licence. A year’s fishing licence would have cost from £33.

John Swali, 29, and Dale Taylor, 30, were caught by fisheries enforcement officers from the Environment Agency at Lucy’s Mill on the River Avon in May.

Swali, of Hobson Road and Taylor, of Dornton Road both pleaded guilty to the offences of fishing in the close season and without a rod licence, when they appeared before magistrates.




Swali received a penalty of £247, including a fine of £40 for each offence, costs of £135 and a victim surcharge of £32.

Taylor received a penalty of £543, including a fine of £146 for each offence, costs of £135 and a victim surcharge of £116.


During the close season, the Environment Agency works with partners such as the Angling Trust’s Voluntary Bailiff Service (VBS) to conduct patrols to ensure anglers respect the no fishing period.

This year officers carried out nearly 500 patrols, reporting 89 anglers for offences and 171 other alleged breaches of fisheries legislation.

Following the verdict, Nichola Tomlinson, fisheries enforcement team leader, said: “A day out fishing for these two anglers in the close season and without a rod licence led to high penalties for this pair of fishermen.

“The cases show how seriously the courts take these offences and we hope the high penalties will act as a deterrent to any angler who is thinking of fishing without a licence or in the close season.

“We inspect rod licences throughout the West Midlands and work 24/7, seven days a week to check on cases of illegal fishing. For those caught cheating the system, we will always prosecute.”

“All income from fishing licence sales is used to fund our work to protect and improve fish stocks, fisheries and the environment. This includes improving habitats for fish, reinvesting money back to facilities and clubs for anglers, tackling illegal fishing and working with partners to encourage more people to give fishing a go.”

Any angler aged 13 or over, fishing on a river, canal or still water needs a licence. Junior licences are free for 13 to 16-year-olds.

Fishing illegally can incur a fine of up to £2,500 and offenders can also have their fishing equipment seized.

Licences are available from www.gov.uk/get-a-fishing-licence or by calling the Environment Agency on 0344 800 5386.

 

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