Poaching Ring Busted on Outskirts of Gros Morne National Park
Director of Communications
Department of Justice
Fisheries and Oceans Canada
Friday, August 27, 2010
A joint operation involving the Provincial Inland Fish Enforcement Program (IFE) of the Department of Justice and Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) has dismantled an illegal netting operation at the headwaters of Parson's Pond on the northern boundary of Gros Morne National Park. The investigation, spanning a number of weeks and involving multiple individuals suspected of widespread illegal salmon netting, has resulted in numerous charges.
On July 28, 2010, fishery officers and IFE officers, along with the assistance of fishery guardians, made several arrests, carried out searches and seized assets. Three individuals from Parson's Pond and a fourth from Pasadena are charged with multiple offences relating to the alleged poaching ring, including netting salmon in inland waters, taking fish in contravention and possessing untagged salmon. Officers seized a boat and outboard motor, a net and a quantity of Atlantic salmon.
Officials with IFE and DFO note that officers have been extremely busy dealing with poaching activity. Enhanced enforcement activity over the last few years has had a positive impact on the recent dramatic increase of salmon in the province, with this year seeing record returns on many rivers. IFE and DFO credit good intelligence, combined with credible information received from conservation groups and the general public, in hampering those poachers still intent on setting illegal nets. IFE and DFO have taken a combined 74 illegal nets from rivers and coastal waters, seized 27 boats and motors, and have confiscated 202 salmon since April.
The public can play an important role in catching poachers by anonymously reporting suspected poaching activity 24-hours a day, toll-free, to either CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS, or IFE at 1-877-820-0999. Photos of seizures relating to recent operations are available at www.stoppoaching.ca .