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Luxton Applauds Paua Bust

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FOR IMMEDIATE USE
24 JUNE 1999

LUXTON APPLAUDS PAUA BUST

Food and Fibre Minister, Hon John Luxton today applauded action taken by the Ministry of Fisheries and Police to clamp down on Wellington paua poachers.

"This is a serious problem that is compromising the sustainability of a fishery that is highly regarded by all stakeholders".

"Policing the paua fishery is a difficult job, and more often than not the Ministry find that the same people continue to commit the same crimes over and over again. This Ministry of Fisheries will not tolerate this type of offending and is committed to stamping out illegal paua poaching".

"I am pleased to see that quality information is being provided to assist with the difficult task of enforcing fisheries legislation. Catching offenders at the 'scene of the crime' is incredibly important in closing down these illegal operations. Once the paua has left the 'scene of the crime' it is very difficult to trace it back to it's origins which means that the 'real offenders' get away scot-free".

Paua poachers risk fines of up to $250,000 and the forfeiture of fishing boats, fishing gear and vehicles etc. if they are convicted.

Ends


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