The Angling Trust continues to take a proactive stance in dealing with poaching and fish theft, two issues which are of great concern to anglers. Unfortunately there has been confusion amongst the law enforcement agencies and the public regarding their responsibilities, who anglers should contact and how the reporting and enforcement system works.
To address this, Angling Trust Fisheries Enforcement Manager Dilip Sarkar MBE - a retired police officer - and Adrian Saunders, the Environment Agency's National Fisheries Enforcement Campaigns Manager, produced the "Elementary Guide to Angling Law & Fishery Enforcement".
This Elementary Guide to Angling Law & Fishery Enforcement is available as a free download from the Angling Trust website HERE.
Importantly, the Guide has now been endorsed by the Police National Wildlife Crime Unit and uploaded to the Police Online Knowledge Area (POLKA) a central repository of guidance material that all Police Officers have at their fingertips. The National Wildlife Crime Unit have also arranged for links to be placed on its website to the Angling Trust's webpages for the Voluntary Bailiff Service and Building Bridges Project.
Dilip Sarkar said, "This is massive progress, because the Guide will be available to every Police Officer throughout the land and an Officer who finds him or herself dealing with a report of poaching or fish theft can refer to the Guide and will know exactly what action to take.
Also, if incidents are reported to the Police but the response is confused or indecisive, anglers can impress upon Officers that all the information they require is available in this document on POLKA. This will undoubtedly help ensure that poaching and fish theft are dealt with for what they are - criminal offences.
Links from the NWCU website to the Angling Trust website will make it easier for everyone to find out how the Trust are working to combat poaching and fish theft, get information on our projects in these areas and promote the partnership work we carry out with the Police and Environment Agency to tackle these issues on behalf of angling".