Corozal man fined for “shrunken” undersized conch

A Corozal District fisherman is out more than $2,500 after Fisheries Department officials busted him with 102 undersized conch which he was trying to sell to Northern Fishermen Cooperative Society in Belize City. But 25 year old Peter Garcia, from the village of Caledonia, told the court that when he caught the conch they were over regulated weight. However, he claimed, they shrunk in size and lost weight because he was unable to get them out of his hands for 10 days. He pleaded guilty to the charge nonetheless and Magistrate Herbert Panton ordered a fine of $500 and court costs as well as $20 for each undersized conch, coming up to $2,545. This is Garcia’s first offence and the Magistrate told him that he risked losing his boat and fishing equipment if he is convicted of another offence; they would Government. The total fine is due by May 29, in default six months’ imprisonment. Official Hector Cunningham made the bust after inspecting the catch at Northern Fishermen’s North Front Street compound on February 11.

About the Author