Milton Keynes angler nets a whopping fine for 'illegally' fishing in lake

Milton Keynes angler Callum Copeland caught himself a whopping fine after taking on a water bailiff who accused him of illegally fishing in a lake.

The 22-year-old, who lives at White Alder on Stacey bushes, was landed with a bill of more than £2,230 following the confrontation over his decision to cast his rod into the lake without a fishing licence.

Silver Lake

Silver Lake

He was prosecuted by the Environment Agency following the incident and was found guilty in his absence by magistrates.

He was convicted of wilfully obstructing a water bailiff, fishing without a licence and failing to state his address to a bailiff when required to do so.

The offences happened at Silver Lake, Wappenham, Northamptonshire.

The court was told Environment Agency enforcement officers were patrolling at the lake and attempted to speak to Copeland. However after initially refusing to provide details when requested, or a valid fishing licence, he eventually provided false details.

Officers identified Copeland's vehicle, which he confirmed belonged to him and used the associated address to later issue him with a court summons.

The incident ended up costing Copeland a total of £1,234.72. He was fined £660, ordered to pay costs of £530.72 and a victim surcharge of £44.

A spokesman for the Environment Agency said: “This case shows how determined we are in catching and prosecuting people who flout the laws and obstruct our officers in carrying out their duties. An annual fishing licence costs just £30, yet a small number of anglers continue to risk prosecution for fishing without a licence.

“Money raised from fishing licence sales is used to protect and improve fish stocks and fisheries, including improving habitats for fish and facilities for anglers, tackling illegal fishing and working with partners to encourage people to give fishing a go."