Francis O’Donnell CEO of IFI commented: “The scale of this illegal salmon netting at sea was at a commercial level, and posed a significant threat to our wild Atlantic salmon stocks.
“It is a serious environmental crime, and such crimes will not be tolerated by IFI.”
Mary Walsh, IFI’s Director of the Western River Basin District, Ballina, added: “I commend the coordinated response of our dedicated teams. There were many factors contributing to the success of this operation, including intelligence, leadership, and planning, as well as the availability and use of specialised equipment.”
Mr O’Donnell, Mr Funket and Mr Radomsky appeared before Belmullet District Court on June 14th 2023, charged with the offences.
The incident took place on June 17th 2022.
The court was told that Mr O’Donnell was the “ringleader” in the operation.
He was convicted, and fined a total of €3,000 for breaches of fisheries legislation, a further €1,000 in expenses to IFI, and €1,845 in costs to IFI.
Mr Funket was fined €750 for the possession of a net, and Mr Radomsky was fined €1,000 for the possession of illegally captured salmon.