A MAN will be close to $10,000 worse off after interfering with someone else’s cray pot last year.
Scott Dale Laird was convicted at Rockingham Magistrates Court on July 2 of interfering with any net or trap or other gear used for fishing.
The prosecutor said members of the public who had witnessed the incident reported it to fisheries that day on January 5, 2017.
Witnesses who were cray fishing behind the three sisters off Port Kennedy saw Laird by himself on another boat with their crayfish pot on board.
They quickly approached him and upon seeing their pot – complete with ropes and floats – on Laird’s boat, words were exchanged.
Ropes from the pot were tangled around Laird’s boat.
Laird maintained his original not guilty plea, stating that he was untangling the witness’s gear from his own.
But pictures submitted to the court showed no other pots in the vicinity at the time of the offence.
Magistrate Leanne Atkins rejected Laird’s defence, saying if his boat had become entangled in ropes there would have been no need to actually pull the pot.
She fined him $800 with $8861.71 costs.
She granted him a spent conviction and denied a Department of Fisheries order for a 12-month fishing ban.
She also denied a confiscation order of the boat and trailer Laird used as they were owned by Laird’s father-in-law.