Spanish trawler skipper is fined 15,000 euro

A Spanish trawler skipper was fined 15,000 euro and had his catch and gear confiscated for possession of a net with a mesh smaller than is permitted in Irish waters. The net was confiscated following a search of the vessel at the weekend in Dingle bay. The Spanish skipper pleaded guilty to a breach of fishing regulations before a sitting of Cork Circuit Criminal Court. Defence for the 34 year old Spaniard Dermot Conway said his client had just qualified as a skipper a year ago and it was his first time that he had come into Irish waters.Mr Don McCarthy prosecuting said the skipper had told the naval officers that he had not used the net in Irish waters. The defendant told the officers that the net was permitted in French waters and he was departing for French waters next. Dermot Conway told the court his client had quota and licences to fish in both Irish and French waters and his client had already notified the sea fisheries protection officer in Dingle of his 23,000 euro worth of catch.