Taking Action To Tackle Poaching
Poaching and fish theft has increased to such proportions over recent years that this is now of great concern to anglers - and a priority for the Angling Trust to address.
In the past, this problem has degenerated due to a general lack of awareness concerning the law and intelligence-led system; little understanding of the police's responsibility towards the criminal offences involved and wider criminal implications connected with poaching; little or no appreciation that this impacts not only on the environment but also on livelihoods; a lack of consistent partnership and intelligence-sharing between the enforcement agencies, and a lack of awareness by the courts.
What we are doing to address this:
- Appointed Dilip
Sarkar MBE, an experienced police officer and life-long angler, as our
first National Enforcement
- Educating anglers
through publication of guides and other material, and delivery of
Fisheries Enforcement Workshops throughout
- Achieved an agreement
with Mr Simon Prince, Chief Constable of Dyfed-Powys and the Association
of Chief Police Officers' National Policing Lead on Rural &
Wildlife Crime, that fishing without permission and the theft of fish
(from enclosed waters) are criminal offences and the police's
- Engaging with an
ever increasing number of police forces to raise awareness and train
operational officers and
- Presenting at Rural
Crime and Wildlife Crime conferences to raise
- Ensure that poaching
is embedded in Rural Crime
- Refer incidents
inappropriately dealt with to Chief Officers for
- Working in
partnership with the National Wildlife Crime Unit and represent anglers
on the England & Wales Poaching Priority Delivery Group to
increase intelligence and raise awareness via Project
partnership working, intelligence-sharing and joint operations between
the Environment Agency, police and other stakeholders - including
Operation CLAMP DOWN, targeting illegal fishing during the annual coarse
close season in SE England, and Operation
TRAVERSE, focusing on illegal fishing and fish
theft in Fenland.
- Provide Impact
Statements, accurately contextualizing the negative implications of
poaching and fish theft, to the Crown Prosecution Service and courts -
in order to achieve appropriate
- Maintain and develop
Bailiff Service, currently an operational pilot
project in SE England, in support of the Environment Agency's delivery
of fisheries enforcement and assisting the police in fighting Rural and
- Extend the
- Impressing upon
anglers the crucial need to report incidents at the time to the police
or Environment Agency, or anonymously via
- Delivering the
Bridges Project, aimed at educating migrant anglers
from Eastern Europe regarding British angling law and culture, and
integrate them, where possible, into British angling
- Sharing intelligence,
where appropriate, with and developing links with enforcement agencies
in Eastern Europe.
Legal, take civil action where appropriate on behalf
of our members.
- Increasing intelligence regarding Organised Crime Gangs known to be behind the illegal importation and movement of carp, and sharing this with the National Wildlife Crime Unit, National Crime Agency and Fish Health Inspectorate.
With more resources, we could:
- Recruit a team
of experienced enforcement professionals to deliver the Fisheries
Enforcement Campaign and Voluntary Bailiff Service on a regional
- Run a concerted political
campaign to raise awareness at Westminster and increase the number of
fisheries enforcement officers
- Take more widespread legal action on behalf of our members.
Contact: Angling Trust Eastwood House, 6 Rainbow Street, Leominster, Herefordshire HR6 8DQ
Tel: 0343 5077006 (For Membership enquiries select Option 1) |
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