CHILLIWACK, BC, Aug. 17, 2017 /CNW/ - On July 13, 2017, Robert Sanford pleaded guilty in Chilliwack Provincial Court to violating the Fisheries Act by removing unprocessed fish from a dry rack site. This happened during a First Nations traditional Sockeye salmon dry rack fishery on the Fraser River at Union Bar, near Hope on July 27, 2016.
Judge Robert Gunnell ordered Mr. Sanford to pay a fine of $1,250 and forfeit $1,985 from the sale of the seized fish.
- Dry Rack licences are issued to individuals of First Nations who have historically air dried fish, have appropriate fishing and drying sites, and erect drying structures along the Fraser River.
- The fish are dried or canned and are used for communal food, social and ceremonial purposes.
- Under the licence conditions for the Fraser River Dry Rack fishery, fish is required to be dried on-site and cannot be removed from the camp fresh.
- Fishery officers observed that harvesters at this site were fishing heavily without adequate facilities to process the quantity of fish being caught.
- Officers charged Mr. Sanford and seized 230 Sockeye and 7 Chinook.
The Government of Canada is committed to safeguarding the long-term health and productivity of Canada's fisheries resources, and the habitat that supports them, for generations to come. Fisheries and Oceans Canada has a mandate to protect and conserve marine resources and to prosecute offenders under the Fisheries Act. It ensures and promotes compliance with the Act and other laws and regulations through a combination of land, air, and sea patrols, as well as education and awareness activities. As part of Fisheries and Oceans Canada's work to end illegal activity, the Department asks the public for information on activities of this nature or any contravention of the Fisheries Act and Regulations. Anyone with information can call the toll-free violation reporting line at 1-800-465-4336.
For more on the licencing of First Nations fisheries: http://www.pac.dfo-mpo.gc.ca/consultation/fn-pn/fnfc-2014/aboriginal-fishing-peches-autochtones-eng.html
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SOURCE Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Pacific Region
For further information: Leri Davies, Strategic Media Relations Advisor, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Pacific Region, Tel: (604) 666-8675, Cell: 604-612-6837