Whitebaiters plead guilty to charges
Archived content: This media release was accurate on the date of publication.
IntroductionDOC is very pleased with the outcome following this week’s prosecutions in the Opotiki District Court.
Date: 12 February 2010
The Department of Conservation is very pleased with the outcome following this week’s prosecutions in the Opotiki District Court.
Camile Edwards was charged with obstruction and fishing within 20 metres of Huntress Creek floodgate. Edwards pleaded guilty to the fishing charge and the obstruction charge was withdrawn. He was convicted and fined $700 plus court costs and he was ordered to forfeit the seized sighting board.
Craig Tregoweth was charged with using two nets, not remaining within 10 metres of his nets and blocking more than a third of Te Rere Koau Stream – all breaches of the Whitebait Fishing Regulations 1994. Tregoweth was convicted and fined $1000 plus court costs.
“The Community Magistrate was concerned that both of these men had a previous whitebaiting conviction and so was concerned to impose high fines in order to deter them from continuing to offend” said Mike Bodie, prosecutor for the Department of Conservation after the court proceedings.
Andy Bassett, Area Manager for Gisborne Whakatane Area was pleased with these convictions. “We hope that these most recent convictions will make people think twice before breaking the Regulations in the future. It is great to see the judiciary supporting the hard work of conservation staff and the greater community.”
A Whakatane man also prosecuted for breaching the Whitebait Fishing Regulations last season is due to appear in the Whakatane District Court on 11 March 2010.
Mr Bassett finished by saying “If everyone were to play by the rules, the chances of there being whitebait for our children’s children to enjoy will be greatly increased”.