The Sea-Fisheries Protection Authority (SFPA) has reiterated that it has a zero tolerance policy for any aggressive behaviour towards its staff..
Dr Susan Steele, Chair, SFPA welcomed the recent ruling by Judge Kevin Kilrane who imposed the Probation Act on Mr Danny Haughey on payment of €300 to RNLI following a guilty plea at Donegal Town District Court. This followed an incident in Killybegs, Donegal on 26 June 2018 whereby a Sea-Fisheries Protection Officer of the SFPA was verbally abused and pushed by Mr Haughey.
Dr Steele condemned the incident saying: “Obstructing or impeding a Sea-Fisheries Protection Officer is a very serious matter and will not be tolerated. They have a job to do implementing government regulations and they are entitled to do so in a safe environment. We carry out our business in a courteous and respectful manner and we will ensure that all such instances are pursued through the Irish courts.”
The SFPA ensures compliance with national fishing quotas, which ensures equality and fairness for all fishers and the continued sustainability of Ireland’s valuable marine resources. It monitors all vessels operating within the Irish EEZ electronically with the support of the Naval Service, and reviews and assesses their declared catches for compliance with EU sea-fisheries legislation. Where non-compliances are found, prosecutions may follow as with any incident of non-compliance with the law.