Enforcement officers lay charges across Newfoundland

 The Pilot

Fish and Wildlife Enforcement officers lay charges across province

Cory Hurley cory.hurley@tc.tc

Published on August 17, 2017

GRAND FALLS-WINDSOR, NL — Fish and Wildlife Enforcement officers have laid a number of charges related to illegal salmon poaching throughout the province in recent weeks.

Fisheries and Land Resources reported that on Aug. 3, while on patrol near Great Rattling Brook near Grand Falls-Windsor, officers came across two individuals carrying a bag. Upon seeing the officers, the two men immediately dropped the bag and fled the scene.

Officers discovered the bag contained a wet net covered in salmon scales. After further investigation, two males from Peterview were charged with illegal possession of a net near inland waters.

Aug. 8, while conducting joint surveillance with fisheries guardians from Marystown, officers apprehended two individuals as they were setting an illegal net in Fortune Brook. A net about 30 feet in length was seized. The individuals were later released by the officers and are to appear in the Grand Bank Provincial Court facing charges of netting in inland waters. A tip from the public assisted with this investigation.

July 31, officers, while conducting surveillance at the mouth of the Colliers River near Conception Harbour, observed an individual land a large Atlantic salmon on the non-scheduled river. Shortly after, the individual was seen returning to his vehicle with the fish in his possession.

Upon further investigation, the man was charged with failing to release an accidentally foul hooked fish and possession of an untagged salmon. Tips from the public assisted with this investigation.

According to a press release issued Thursday, the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador is committed to protecting the province’s resources and to ensuring they remain available for those who respect legislation concerning the proper management and conservation of fish and wildlife.

Members of the public who discover an illegal net are encouraged to leave it where it is and report it for investigation. Any suspicious activity can be reported anonymously and toll-free at any time, by calling 1-877-820-0999 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS. Anonymous online reports can also be submitted at www.stoppoaching.ca or www.nlcrimestoppers.com.