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Compliance Outcomes: Sanctions and Prosecutions

Where compliance is not achieved and a breach of legislation has been identified, there are a number of different enforcement actions that may be applied, depending on the severity of the offence. Verbal Warnings, Advisory Letters and Official Warning Letters may be issued for less serious offences, whereas more serious fisheries offences may result in Cautions, Financial Administrative Penalties* (FAPs) and Prosecutions. For more detail see the Compliance and Enforcement Framework.

*Since 6th April 2011, IFCAs have had the option to issue a Financial Administrative Penalty (FAP) as an alternative to a criminal prosecution. The Authority may consider issuing a FAP based on a number of factors, and where the offence may be classed as a ‘penalty offence’. See the full guidance here: Southern IFCA FAP Guidance.

Recent enforcement outcomes:

12th May 2021 - Poole Fishermen plead guilty to Obstruction and Retaining Undersize Shellfish

On 12 th May 2021 at Poole Magistrates Court, brothers Andrew Skinner and Christopher Skinner of Poole pleaded guilty to fishing offences. As part owner of fishing vessel Sky PE1232, Mr. Andrew Skinner pleaded guilty to charges of retaining a quantity of undersized clams aboard his vessel and obstructing enforcement officers from the Southern Inshore Fisheries & Conservation Authority (Southern IFCA).

As master and part owner of fishing vessel Sky PE1232, Mr. Christopher Skinner pleaded guilty to retaining a quantity of undersized clams. Andrew Skinner and Christopher Skinner were both fined £400, both ordered to pay £400 towards prosecution costs and both ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £40.

19th April 2021 - Poole fisher pleads guilty to Obstruction and Failure to Comply charges

On 19 th April 2021 at Poole Magistrates Court, Mr. Patrick Hennessy of Poole pleaded guilty to charges of Obstructing and Failing to Comply with an enforcement officer from the Southern Inshore Fisheries & Conservation Authority (Southern IFCA).

The court heard how on the night of 12 th January 2020 in Poole Harbour Mr. Hennessy was fishing from an unregistered, unlicenced fishing boat. Mr. Hennessy was intercepted by Southern IFCA officers aboard the Fisheries Patrol Vessel. He was asked by officers to stop, to allow an inspection of his vessel, but he failed to do so. The officers were obstructed in the performance of their officer functions when Mr. Hennessy threw his catch and fishing equipment overboard.

Mr. Hennessy was fined £150 for obstructing enforcement officer Adam Parry and a further £150 for failing to comply with a direction reasonably given by officer Parry. In addition, Mr. Hennessy was ordered to pay £500 towards prosecution costs and a victim surcharge of £32.

For more updates on Compliance Outcomes visit our News Page.

Compliance Statistics

Between April 2019 and March 2020, Southern IFCA carried out a total of 88 vessel patrols at sea and 129 shore patrols on land. During the 88 patrols at sea, a total of 223 vessel boardings were carried out, for the purpose of conducting inspections. A total of 292 landing inspections and 54 premises inspections were carried out during the 129 shore patrols.

In the cases of minor breaches of legislation, a total of 46 verbal warning or advisory letters were issued. However, for more serious breaches of legislation, a total of 29 case files were generated. Of these case files, 12 resulted in written warnings being issued, 3 cases resulted in FAPs (Financial Administrative Penalties) being offered, and 3 cases resulted in prosecution.

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