17 May 2022

Group fishing in Auckland caught with 200kg illegal snapper haul

11:22 am on 17 May 2022

A group of five people out fishing have been snapped with almost 10 times the daily snapper limit.

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Photo: Rafael Ben-Ari/Chameleons Eye/ 123rf

Two fishery officers found the 200 kilogram illegal haul when inspecting boats at the Halfmoon Bay boat ramp in east Auckland last Thursday.

The group was found with 348 fish, including 317 snapper, of which 95 were undersize.

The daily limit for snapper in the area is seven per person, with a minimum size of 30 centimetres.

That would allow a group of five to catch 35.

The five will likely face prosecution under the Fisheries Act and their vessel has been seized by the Ministry for Primary Industries.

"We work hard to protect fishing resources so that current and future generations can enjoy catching a feed of kaimoana," said Andre Espinoza, the ministry's west North Island regional manager for fish compliance.

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

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