Illegal Whitebait Poaching Activities Result in a Significant Fine
On Monday 19th October 2015 Stephen Kyle Johnson, 20 years old of Smithton was sentenced in the Burnie Magistrates Court on 12 counts of offences relating to the taking of whitebait. The offences occurred on 3 separate occasions at Deep Creek near Smithton during September last year. The defendant was fined $4 158.00 plus ordered to pay $78.44 in court costs after pleading guilty on Monday 5th October 2015. Deep Creek is a water that is closed at all times to the taking of whitebait, and the penalties handed down in this instance should serve as a warning to those who choose to disregard the strict regulations around the taking of whitebait. The management of the whitebait fishery is of the upmost concern to the Inland Fisheries Service, and illegal poaching activities have the potential to seriously jeopardise the ongoing sustainability of the fishery. Anyone who suspects or witnesses unlawful activity is urged to contact Stephen Hepworth Manager (Compliance and Operations) at the Inland Fisheries Service on 0438 338 530.