Knowing this boat belonged to a poacher makes this bittersweet.
An Australian man had to pay the ultimate price when his boat was seized and forfeited to the state of Queensland last year. The recreational fisherman and a restaurant manager were collectively fined $8,600 for the black marketing of redclaw crayfish.
Queensland Boating and Fisheries Patrol officers were able to bust the recreational fisherman from Kuraby in the process of delivering nearly 200 redclaw crayfish to the Sunnybank restaurant.
The investigation yielded jaw-dropping results, as authorities were able to seize about 293 pounds of redclaw crayfish, 82 freshwater traps, a 14.75-foot catamaran and a kayak at Somerset Damn and Brisbane.
Watch as Queensland Boating and Fisheries Patrol officers bust a Brisbane recreational fisher for black marketing redclaw.A court later forfeited his boat and fined him more than $7,600, also fining a restaurant manager $1,000. Read the full story at https://bit.ly/2SuFEPy
Posted by Fisheries Queensland on Wednesday, January 2, 2019
The fisherman was fined $7,600 after pleading guilty to five total charges, which included selling fisheries without a license in addition to employing 78 unmarked freshwater traps.
The restaurant manager said he never had any intention of selling the crayfish, claiming he bought it for a staff party. However, he would still plead guilty to selling seafood without an authority and receive a $1,000 fine.
Following the seizure of the boat, state officials auctioned off the motors. However, since the owner had modified the hull, officials deemed it unsafe and unsuitable for resale, so they elected to destroy it.
Watch the video below:
Fishers thinking about breaking the law risk losing their fishing boat. This forfeited boat was crushed at a recycling facility today after the owners used it in the black marketing of redclaw.The boat’s motors were auctioned last week, but the hull had been modified—it was considered unsafe and not suitable for re-sale.For more information, read the full story for details of the offence https://bit.ly/2TijKTb and watch the Queensland Boating and Fisheries Patrol bust https://bit.ly/2SqSxsY
Posted by Fisheries Queensland on Monday, February 25, 2019
"Unlicensed selling of fisheries resources undermines the legitimate commercial fishing industry and threatens Queensland's reputation as a producer of high-quality seafood," Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries Mark Furner said in a press release. "Reforms currently before Parliament are aimed squarely at fishers who illegally sell seafood on the black market, including stronger compliance powers for fisheries officers and higher penalties for offenders.
"The community has been calling for a change to fisheries legislation for many years and these proposed reforms will bring Queensland fisheries management in line with the world's best practice."
While it's brutal to watch a fishing vessel get crushed like this, it is slightly satisfying to know an illegal poacher had to watch it happen to his own boat!