Fisheries Act, 1980

Prohibition of sale of certain nets or netting.

57.—(1) The Minister may by order prohibit the sale of nets or netting of a prescribed class or description.

(2) A person who sells a net or netting in contravention of an order under this section shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding £500.

(3) Where in any proceedings for an offence under this section—

(a) the defendant proves—

(i) that prior to the sale to which the alleged offence relates he had given to the Minister notice in writing of his intention to sell nets or netting of the relevant prescribed class or description, and

(ii) that prior to such sale he had made of the purchaser inquiries as to the purposes for which the relevant net or netting was to be used, and

(iii) that he had kept a record in the manner directed under subsection (4) of this section by the Minister of the result of his inquiries, and

(b) the defendant produces to the court such record, and, in case the defendant was requested by or on behalf of the Minister so to do, he proves that within a reasonable time he produced to an officer of the Minister such record and allowed such officer to inspect it, and

(c) the court is satisfied—

(i) that the inquiries were made in good faith, and

(ii) that in the circumstances of the case it would have been reasonable for the defendant, having regard to the results of the inquiries, to have believed that such net or netting was not to be used for or in relation to fishing he shall be acquitted of the offence.

(4) In case the Minister receives a notification in writing by a person of his intention to sell net or netting of a class or description specified in an order under this section, the Minister shall as soon as may be give to the person directions as to the manner in which a record of the results of inquiries made by him for the purposes of subsection (3) of this section is to be kept.