Illegal catch fines levied

Three men received the largest fines to date for marine violations last week.

Ronnie Dougall

Caption: Marine Enforcement Officer Ronnie Dougall displays a large number of seized conch.

A combined 30 charges were levelled against the trio – two Caymanians and one American. Each man was fined CI$1,950 and received stern comments from Magistrate Nova Hall.

In September 2005 the men were caught in the Replenishment Zone at Frank Sound with more than 100 conch and 11 lobsters. Anonymous tips were received by Enforcement Officers Ronnie Dougall and Carl Edwards, who made the arrest.

‘This is another case for which we have to give credit to the people of the Cayman Islands, who are no longer willing to stand idly by while criminals continually damage our ocean’s fragile ecosystem,’ says Mr. Dougall.

He notes that there are more than five cases pending in court.

‘Protecting our waters cannot be left to just a few; we all must continue to do our part,’ Mr. Dougall said.

The DOE encourages the public to continue calling in their anonymous tips. Mr. Dougall can be reached around the clock on 926-4444; Chief Enforcement Officer Ladner Watler on 925-5158; and Enforcement Supervisor Mark Orr on 916-4271.

Callers can also dial 911 or the DOE office at 949-8469.

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