200kg illegal snapper haul caught by MPI

By Will Trafford

Photo / NZME

Fisheries officers have caught a group of five people at Tāmaki’s, Half Moon Bay boat ramp with almost 200 kilograms of Snapper, much of which was undersized.

Officers say the group had 348 fish on board, five times the daily limit; almost a third of the fish were undersize.

"We work hard to protect fishing resources so that current and future generations can enjoy catching a feed of kaimoana," said Ministry for Primary Industries compliance officer Andre Espinoza, in a statement.

"When people take this obviously illegal haul of fish - along with many of them being undersize - they threaten the sustainability of the fishery.”

The minimum size for Snapper in Tāmaki is 30 centimetres, there is a max catch of 7 fish a day.

The group’s vessel has been seized and they will be prosecuted under the Fisheries Act according to MPI.

"The rules are there for a reason and when we find evidence of deliberate rule breaking, you can be assured we will take action." Espinoza added.