Undersize crab hauls lead to large court fines!

Media release,February 2008;


Four people have been handed down large fines in the Bunbury Court today, for taking undersize crabs from the Leschenault Estuary. The four people did not appear in court, but all of them entered pleas of guilty. Their cases followed a series of incidents last month, when Fisheries and Marine officers ran a number of patrols at Australind to target recreational fishers who were ignoring laws aimed at keeping local crab stocks in the Estuary sustainable. 35-year-old Barry Narkle of Donnybrook was found in possession of 74 undersize blue swimmer crabs (often called blue manna crabs), when his vehicle was stopped in Cathedral Drive, Australind on Tuesday 15 January. He was ordered to pay a fine of $1,000, an additional mandatory penalty of $1,480 and court costs of $110.20. 44-year-old Lera Sinclair and 57-year-old Harry Sinclair from the Perth suburb of Nollamara were each fined $400 and given an additional mandatory penalty of $1160 each as well as court costs of $110.20 each for having 58 undersize crabs when they were apprehended by Fisheries and Marine Officers on Sunday 20 January. Matthew William Free of Bunbury (aged 18) was fined $500 for being in possession of 18 undersize crabs. The court was told Fisheries and Marine Officers had questioned Free, after his vehicle was stopped near the Leschenault Estuary on Sunday 20 January. He was also ordered to pay a mandatory penalty of $360 and costs of $110.20


Southern Region Compliance Manager Peter Godfrey said the Department of Fisheries would continue to prosecute fishers who took undersize crabs. “Magistrate Wayne Tarr said he regarded the matters before him today as serious, because of the depletion of crab stocks,” Mr Godfrey said. The minimum size for a blue swimmer crab is 127mm across the widest part of the shell. All undersize and egg carrying crabs must be returned to the water within 5 minutes. A one page guide on Crabbing for Blue Swimmer Crabs in the West Coast Region can be downloaded from the Department of Fisheries website at www.fish.wa.gov.au.


A fourth case before the court today was adjourned to 15 July in Bunbury. Petrina June Farmer and Louise Gaye Bennell of Bunbury (both aged 23) have been charged with joint possession of 53 undersize blue swimmer crabs.


Narrow minded people with i dont give a toss attitude....well take thatWink

Neander's picture

Posts: 520

Date Joined: 23/10/07

Geeze Not only undersized

Wed, 2008-02-20 12:33

Not only undersized but way over the possession limit.

I suppose crew that don't take notice of size limits are going to respect quantity limits either.

abandon's picture

Posts: 204

Date Joined: 23/05/07

Selfish and Greedy

Wed, 2008-02-20 12:50

What were they thinking?
Makes you wonder how much of this goes on...I'll bet theres way more that don't get caught. BIGGER FINES!!!!

If we can hit that bullseye, the rest of the dominoes will fall like a house of cards. Checkmate.

fishy fingers's picture

Posts: 1719

Date Joined: 28/04/07

Bugger the fines

Wed, 2008-02-20 14:54

Lock the bastards up they deserve it, a fine is no good even a big one they will just claim hardship and offer to pay a dollar a week, Mind you they're probbably used to Jail too! I think at least one of the names is known to police.

>To all the virgins..............Thanks for nothing!