Illegal anglers 'landed' in court

PUBLISHED: 11:02 13 February 2009 | UPDATED: 13:54 06 May 2010

ANGLERS caught more than they bargained for when they went fishing without a licence in lakes at London Colney. They landed in court and were fined hundreds of pounds. The Environment Agency (EA) found the seven men fishing illegally at Willows Lakes with

ANGLERS caught more than they bargained for when they went fishing without a licence in lakes at London Colney. They landed in court and were fined hundreds of pounds.

The Environment Agency (EA) found the seven men fishing illegally at Willows Lakes without rod licences on separate occasions between August and September last year.

The culprits, who were all from outside the area, were fined a total of nearly £900 at West Herts Magistrates' court last week and were all ordered to pay £75 in costs.

The EA National Enforcement Service team takes action against anyone caught fishing without a licence.

Andy Strevens, the EA's regional fisheries specialist, said: "Those who try to outwit the system and avoid paying for a valid rod licence are cheating their fellow anglers. All the money raised from licence sales is put straight back into improving the environment for wildlife, anglers and the community in general."

He added: "We are delighted the court has taken this action. Illegal anglers should realise that our officers are on the river bank and if anyone is caught flouting the law they will be caught and punished."

The maximum fine for fishing illegally is £2,500 and a ban from fishing.

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