Fisherman is fined for officer assault

David McCandless

David McCandless

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The chief officer of the regional branch of a fishing and conservation authority has spoken out after a Bridlington fisherman assaulted one of its officers.

David McCandless, who is the chief officer of the North East Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority (pictured), welcomed Beverley Magistrates’ Court’s decision to fine Bridlington fisherman Peter Cox a total of £7,000, following the incident last summer.

He said: “The penalties levied by the Magistrates’ Court were very reassuring and demonstrate that the courts take fisheries very seriously, particularly when they relate to the obstruction and assault of one of the Authority’s officers which thankfully rare occurrence in our region.”

The court heard that fisherman Cox had prevented officers from the Inshore Fishing and Conservation Authority from inspecting his vehicle at Bridlington Harbour.

The incident, which took place on 22 July, then culminated in Cox striking an officer while he was driving away from the quayside.

Appearing at Beverley Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday (February 9), Cox was fined £2,000 for the obstruction, £5,000 fine for the assault and ordered to pay full costs.

It comes after the North East Inshore Fishing and Conservation Authority secured a further two successful convictions against Scarborough skipper fishermen.

Appearing at Scarborough Magistrates’ Court on January 15, Gary Buchan pleaded guilty to the retention and storage of two lobsters and 430 king scallops below the minimum legal landing size at Scarborough Harbour, on December 18 2014.

Buchan was fined £7,500 and ordered to pay full costs.

And Scott Glover, skipper of the Rejoice BH 220, pleaded guilty to breaching the authority’s emergency scallop dredging byelaw regulation off the North Yorkshire Coast on May 16 2015.

He was fined £3,750 and ordered to pay full costs.

The authority’s area of jurisdiction covers 224 coastal miles, encompassing more than 20 fishing ports.