A fishing trip cost a Gloucester man over £800 in fines after he was caught committing wildlife crime.
Frank Cole, of Bibury Road, Gloucester, was punished for doing his hobby in the closed season and without a licence.
The 52-year-old was found guilty in his absence at Northampton Magistrates’ Court on November 26 for his actions six months earlier.
On May 31, 2018, he failed to give his name and address to an Environment Agency bailiff when requested.
The charges were brought following a joint patrol by the Environment Agency, Angling Trust and Gloucestershire Constabulary.
Magistrates fined Cole £660 in total.
A spokesperson from the Environment Agency said: “Working with the Angling Trust’s Voluntary Bailiffs and Gloucestershire Constabulary is a great way we can jointly tackle rural and wildlife crime.”
Angling is not allowed during the closed season in order to protect spawning fish stocks.
The Environment Agency works in partnership with the Angling Trust to send out voluntary bailiffs to keep watch on their local waters.
An annual fishing licence costs just £30, yet a small number of anglers continue to flout the law and risk prosecution.
The money is invested in England’s fisheries and is used to fund a wide range of projects to improve facilities for anglers including protecting stocks, eradicating invasive species and fish habitat improvements.
Fishing licence money is also used to fund the Angling Trust’s various activities.
Dilip Sarkar MBE, Angling Trust National Enforcement Manager added: “Part of the overall partnership enforcement strategy is raising awareness of the crucial need to report incidents to the police and Environment Agency.
“This case was detected because information was provided to our Fisheries Enforcement Support Service by anglers.
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“This was passed on to the authorities who worked together to decisively deal with the offender. This is a perfect example of team-work in action.”
Anyone witnessing illegal fishing can report it directly to the Environment Agency hotline on 0800 80 70 60.