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Serial Paua Poacher Gets Three-year Fishing Ban

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, Dec 16 NZPA - A serial paua poacher has been banned from fishing for three years.

Ekana Manahi and Te Kohu Campbell were convicted of taking excess and undersized paua in Christchurch District Court late last week.

Fisheries officers found the men at Boulder Bay near Godley Head with 72 paua, 66 of which were undersized, on September 17.

A person is allowed to take 10 paua of at least 125mm a day.

Manahi had three previous convictions for paua poaching.

Judge Raoul Neave banned him from fishing for three years and ordered him to do 250 hours of community work.

If he was caught fishing during that time, he would likely end up in jail, Judge Neave said.

He sentenced Campbell to 150 hours' community work.

Ministry of Fisheries compliance manager Peter Hyde said the ministry hoped the sentence sent a clear message poachers would be caught.

"We are pleased that the judge had ordered Mr Manahi be banned from fishing for three years as it will be a real deterrent to anyone who might consider reoffending."

Fishery officers in Canterbury had had a busy summer so far, issuing 30 fines ranging from $250-$500 for paua offences alone.

Seven caught with larger amounts of paua had been brought before the court.

"We want everyone to enjoy their fishing this summer, but they need to do so responsibly," Mr Hyde said.

People could learn the fishing rules at the ministry's website, he said.

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