Express & Star

Pair catch joint penalty of £642 for fishing without a licence

Two men have been fined £642 between them for fishing illegally on separate occasions in the summer.

Last updated

Their cases were brought by the Environment Agency at Northampton Magistrates Court.

Jake Devine, 25, of Burford Close, Willenhall, pleaded guilty to fishing without a licence at Baden Hall Fishery, in Eccleshall, Staffordshire on July 7.

He was ordered to pay a total penalty of £297, including a fine of £116, costs of £135 and a victim surcharge of £46.

David Richardson, 30, from Walsall Road, Great Wyrley, was proved guilty in his absence of fishing without a licence at Chorley Springs, Burntwood, on August 27.

He was ordered to pay a total penalty £345, including a fine of £150, costs of £135 and a victim surcharge of £60.

Nichola Tomlinson, fisheries enforcement team leader at the Environment Agency, said:  “These anglers have been rightly punished for the illegal fishing they undertook this summer, and the cases show how seriously the courts take these offences.

"We hope the penalties received by the illegal anglers will act as a deterrent to anyone who is thinking of breaking the laws and by-laws we have in place across England.

“Fishing illegally can incur a fine of up to £2,500 and offenders can also have their fishing equipment seized. We inspect rod licences 24/7, seven days a week to check on cases of illegal fishing.

“Illegal fishing undermines the Environment Agency’s efforts to protect fish stocks and make fishing sustainable.  Money raised from fishing licence sales is used to protect and improve fish stocks and fisheries for the benefit of anglers and, for those caught cheating the system, we will always prosecute.”

Any angler aged 13 or over, fishing on a river, canal or still water needs a licence to fish.

A single day licence costs from £6 and an annual licence currently costs from £30.

Junior licences are free for 13 to 16-year-olds. Licences are available from or by calling the Environment Agency on 0344 800 5386 between 8am and 6pm, Monday to Friday.

The Environment Agency carries out enforcement work all year round and is supported by partners including the police and the Angling Trust.

Fisheries enforcement work is intelligence-led, targeting known hot-spots and where illegal fishing is reported.

Anyone with information about illegal fishing activities can contact the Environment Agency incident hotline 24/7 on 0800 807060 or anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Sorry, we are not accepting comments on this article.