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SFPA Concludes Case Brought Over Breaches of Sea Bass Conservation Laws

24th June 2023

The Sea-Fisheries Protection Authority (SFPA) says it has concluded a case brought against the master of a fishing vessel for breaches of bass conservation laws two years ago.

The master of the fishing vessel Atlantic Jem, Sean Roche, pleaded guilty at Midleton District Court, Co Cork, on June 15th to two charges of contravening the Bass (Conservation of Stocks) Regulations 2006 in 2021.

The case arose from an SFPA inspection of the landing from the Atlantic Jem in December 2021, at Ballycotton, Co. Cork, where nine bass were discovered by its officers within boxed catch of other fish species.

The SFPA says the court heard evidence that the master admitted to knowledge of the prohibition on retention of bass by Irish vessels.

The case was adjourned to June 22nd to allow the master to make a charitable donation of €1,000.

The donation was subsequently made, and the Probation Act was applied to finalise the matter, the SFPA said.

Ireland introduced particular restrictions and controls to protect bass, as a conservation measure, due to the depletion of stocks in Irish waters.

Published in SFPA Team

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About the Sea Fisheries Protection Authority (SFPA)

The Sea-Fisheries Protection Authority was established on the 1st of January 2007. The SFPA is independent in the exercise of its functions, which are below.

The principal functions of the Authority are:

  1. To secure efficient and effective enforcement of sea-fisheries law and food safety law
  2. To promote compliance with & deter contraventions of sea-fisheries law and food safety law
  3. To detect contraventions of sea-fisheries law and food safety law
  4. To provide information to the sea-fisheries and seafood sectors on sea-fisheries law and food safety law and relevant matters within the remit of the Authority, through the Consultative Committee established under section 48 of the above Act or by any other means it considers appropriate
  5. To advise the Minister in relation to policy on effective implementation of sea-fisheries law and food safety law
  6. To provide assistance and information to the Minister in relation to the remit of the Authority
  7. To collect and report data in relation to sea fisheries and food safety as required by the Minister and under Community law
  8. To represent or assist in the representation of the State at national, Community and international fora as requested by the Minister, and
  9. To engage in any other activities relating to the functions of the Authority as may be approved of by the Minister.