operation turbo reef illegal crab haul red handed crabbing rules queensland aussie salvage squad fined commercial fisher fined $12,000 deter black marketing

$12,000 fine to deter fisheries black marketing

A CLONTARF recreational fisher who sold crabs unlawfully has been convicted and fined $12,000 in the Redcliffe Magistrates’ Court.

During sentencing, the Magistrate commented that the offending was commercially motivated and had a detrimental effect on recreational and commercial fishers. Referring to the fisher’s history of fisheries offences, the Magistrate said the court penalty should send a clear message to deter others. Queensland Boating and Fisheries Patrol District Manager Brett Depper said the offences were detected when the fisher’s property was searched in October 2017.

“Fisheries officers found undersized fish including mud crabs, blue swimmer crabs and blackspotted rockcod along with marine plants in a bucket used to store live mud crabs,” Mr Depper said. “The investigation found evidence the fisher had sold mud crabs and blue swimmer crabs on 10 separate occasions between March 2016 and September 2017.”

Mr Depper said the black market supply of crabs threatens the sustainability of the community’s fisheries resources and reminded consumers to only buy seafood from licensed suppliers. The defendant pleaded guilty to charges of unlawfully selling fisheries resources, unlawful possession of regulated fish, not complying with a regulated fishing apparatus declaration, and unlawfully damaging a marine plant.

Queensland Boating and Fisheries Patrol relies on the ongoing support of the community to help protect Queensland’s valuable fisheries resources. If people suspect illegal fishing activity, including the unlawful sale of fisheries resources, they should report it to the Fishwatch hotline on 1800 017 116.

For more information on Queensland fishing rules and regulations, visit www.fisheries.qld.gov.au, call 13 25 23 or download the free ‘Qld Fishing’ app from Apple and Google app stores.

You can follow Fisheries Queensland on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (@FisheriesQld).

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