02 May 2013
The prosecution of a French skipper has highlighted the need for fishermen to make sure they have valid permits for the fisheries zones they are working in.
Olivier Blanchet, the owner skipper of the Brittany registered Le Cobbe, was fined £2,500 in the Magistrate’s Court on Monday 29 April for scallop dredging within the Granville Bay Area without a valid access permit on 5 March 2013. Msr Blanchet was also fined £100 for recording that day’s fishing inaccurately in his vessel logbook.
Assistant Director, Marine Resources at the Department of the Environment, Mike Smith, said “We hope that the prosecution will send out a message that fishermen need to make sure that they have the correct permits in place to fish within the Granville Bay Area and the Jersey Territorial Sea. It is also very important that vessel's fishing logs record the correct zones so that both the Jersey and French authorities know what is being caught in different areas and in what quantity.”
He said that Le Cobbe was spotted by fisheries protection officers at sea onboard the Marine Resources vessel Norman Le Brocq and a check showed that the vessel did not have a current permit. About 1,200kg of scallops were found on board.
Since the incident Msr Blanchet has applied for and been issued with a permit for the area and obtained a chart with the correct fishing zones.