Men fined R40 000 for illegal fishing
The iSimangaliso Wetland Park has hailed the conviction of two men for the illegal possession of crayfish.
Frederic Barnard and Cornelius Fisagie both pleaded guilty to the possession of 69 East Coast Rock Lobster and an octopus – without a permit.
The Mtubatuba district court sentenced the pair to a fine of R20 000 each or 12 months behind bars on Wednesday.
They were also banned from entering the Eastern Shores Section of the iSimangaliso Wetland Park, which includes Cape Vidal and Mission Rocks, for a period of one year from the date of their conviction.
The men had attempted to smuggle the haul out of iSimangaliso’s Bhangazi Gate in the boot of their vehicle on May 6 this year, after catching them near Mission Rocks.
A roadblock set by Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife conservation staff uncovered the illicit cargo, which included 63 undersized crayfish.
Ezemvelo’s Andrew Zaloumis says staff members will remain vigilant, as the world heritage site needs to be preserved for future generations.
“The resources in the park are there for everybody in this country, and for our future – for our children, and they need to be used sustainably. If you want crayfish and you want to fish, then you need licences, you need to follow the rules, you can’t catch undersized crayfish,” he said. “You need to go into the areas that are zoned [for fishing].”
(Photo: Gallo Images)