A FISHERMAN who reeled in one of the largest-ever catches of illegal snapper in Portland harbour will have to pay $2755 in court penalties.
Nanjing Night Net

The 55-year-old Melbourne man was found guilty in Portland Magistrates Court of taking 45 undersized fish and exceeding the legal bag limit.

He was fined $1000 and ordered to pay $1755 to the Crown in compensation for fish taken.

Fishing gear was forfeited.

Another man who was fishing with the defendant at the Lee Breakwater on November 7 claimed not to have caught any of the fish, but was given an on-the-spot fine for not having a current fishing licence.

They came to the attention of authorities after a tip-off from an observer using the 13FISH (133 474) telephone line.

When fisheries officers responded to the call they found the men with 54 fish — 45 of which were snapper under the minimum legal length of 28 centimetres.

Department of Primary Industries western region fisheries officer Paul Millar said it was believed to be the largest number of undersized fish in a recreational catch during the past three decades in western Victoria.

“The penalty reflects this,” he said.

The bag limit for snapper is 10, of which no more than three fish can be 40cm or longer.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.