Fines for rock lobster offences
3 April 2006
A Masterton man has been convicted and fined for possessing excess and undersized rock lobsters.
John Mark Pollett was found guilty in the Masterton District Court on 28 March for possessing 25 excess rock lobsters, the majority of which were undersized. The discovery of the rock lobsters was made during a vessel patrol on 23 January 2005, when fishery officers found Mr Pollett on a vessel at Riversdale Beach. On the deck of the vessel was a fish bin with 58 rock lobsters, of which 51 were undersized. The daily per person limit of rock lobster is six.
At the commencement of the hearing, Mr Pollett submitted that the Court did not have jurisdiction over his fishing activities since they arose from the Treaty of Waitangi. Judge Blaikie held that he had jurisdiction. Since Mr Pollett did not wish to take part in the hearing, the matter was then formally proved.
Mr Pollet was fined $600 for possessing excess rock lobsters, $600 for possessing undersized rock lobsters, $300 for having an illegal rock lobster pot on a vessel, $300 for using an illegal rock lobster pot, and $520 court costs.
Mr Pollet’s possession of the excess and undersized rock lobsters breached the Fisheries Act 1996.