All about that bass: Man’s fishing rod confiscated

A father of four caught with three sea bass — one more than was allowed — while fishing on Derrynane Bay, is to have his fishing rod and gear confiscated.

The man, who is unemployed, must also pay costs of €250 as well as a €150 fine.

Last month Cahersiveen District Court was told how Stephen Bradshaw, aged 49, of Seaview, Sneem, Co Kerry, was summonsed by Inland Fisheries Ireland.

The court was told there were two men in the fishing expedition and four fish. Bradshaw’s solicitor, Padraig O’Connell, said what had taken place was a joint enterprise. “The allegation is that one had had three fish and one man had one bass — but the question is whether they each had two fish each,” Mr O’Connell said.

He was applying for disclosure and for all documents relating to the claim.

Inland Fisheries solicitor Vincent Coakley said two fisheries officers had observed the accused and a third party fishing for sea bass and the limit they were allowed was two.

“Mr Bradshaw caught three fish and killed them,” Mr Coakley said.

Mr O’Connell said his client was accepting he had the bigger catch with three fish. He said Bradshaw was a father of four, a keen fisherman, and had been a member of an angling club for over two decades. He was unemployed and was actually fishing for food. He had no previous conviction.

“His fishing tackle means everything to him and the costs are quite high,” Mr O’Connell said.

Judge James O’Connor said: “Your client wants everything — his rod back, his gear back, and no costs. Will we send him on a foreign holiday,” the judge asked.

The offence of killing or having more than two bass other than imported bass in any 24-hour period comes under the Fisheries Acts of 1959, 1980, and 2010, and a 2007 by-law.

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