Men seriously abuse conch catch limit

| 10/01/2012

nr0551-d.jpg(CNS): Two fishermen apprehended by the police in East End on Monday were found in possession of forty-two times the legal limit of conch. The men were arrested yesterday afternoon at around 2:30 on suspicion of a number of marine offences, including taking conch in excess of the prescribed limit. Officers from the Joint Marine Unit and Bodden Town police station carried out the operation near the district's  public beach, when the two men aged 37 and 41 years were also found in possession of an illegal spear gun, 3 lobsters and 421 conch.

Inspector Richard Harford of Bodden Town police station said the Marine Conservation Law strictly limits the number of conch that can be taken per day. “The law is quite clear,” he said. “A person can take five conch per day, or ten per boat. The two men arrested yesterday paid no heed whatsoever of the law or of the need to conserve the valuable marine life in the Cayman Islands.”

A police spokesperson confirmed that it was too late to return the seized conch to the sea so the catch was donated to the Department of Family Services and the Pines retirement home.

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Comments (61)

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  1. David says:

    No matter how you look at t these guys broke the law, and wether you like certain laws or not, they generally are there for a good reason.

    If everyone did this kind of thing, then there would no conch, and everyone would miss out



  2. Anonymous says:

    I started to type that a solution should be that tags are assigned so people/restaurants have proof that the meats are caught legally.  Then I thought well 5 per person per day could be a lot of admin to organize.  What about a centeralize buyer/market that all sales must go through so everyone is on the up and up, fisherman and restaurants (and employ some more people to manage).  Then I was thinking wow only 5 a day isn't much if you really are trying to make a living out of it. 

    So if you are a fisherman…could you really make a living each day on 5?  So if you are a fisherman…..making a living…  If its only 5 i can't see people only taking 5 at a time to pay for gas, etc.

    Please help me understand.  I guess they are fishing other species at the same time?  Whats the average price of a conch?

    Regardless……these 2 guys suck.

  3. Anonymous says:

    This is not meant to be critical of any specific area of goverment, but this kind of abuse is common and, unfortunately,  only a few people ever get caught.

    Cayman has dropped the ball in many regards…some of the millions speant to "protect" marine life should be invested in seafood farming:  shrimp, lobster, conch, grouper, etc.  This may actually turn a profit, as opposed to the  West Bay money pit, better known as "Boatswain Beach".

  4. SKEPTICAL says:

    These are ignorant uneducated people of whom an example should be made with the imposition of a serious prison sentence, BUT, with the offer of some mitigation if they reveal the names of the restaurant(s) to which they were going to sell, or have previously sold, their illegal catches.

  5. Anonymous says:

    How do you find 421 conchs to catch? & where do you put them? lol


  6. Anonymous says:

    I think all the comments on here should be sent via post to jacka$$es in prison so they can see just what Cayman thinks of them!

  7. Anonymous says:

    One can only wonder how many conch these 2 have taken illegally in the past 12 months alone…1,000s.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Why do these guys never get the maximum sentence?

  9. Anonymous says:

    There is absolutely NO point in fining them, you can be sure that they do not have any money and will only be out catching more illegal amounts of seafood to cover teh fine.

    Punishment needs to be labour/community service. Their 'time' should be put to good use. This should be used more often.

    'Time' is valuable to everyone.

  10. conch handler says:

    Ah for crying out loud, ITS CHRISTMAS!!!

  11. Anonymous says:

    If we were all vegetarian, they wouldn’t have anyone to sell them to. Then the little conchs could live in peace.

    • FBB says:

      If we were all vegetarian then thousands of plants and trees would be destroyed. I say prevent that kind of “violence” and eat to our hearts content and make the plants and trees live in peace.

    • Anonymous says:

      Well – conch dont have no blood, so it's a veggie, right? Hmm- just like tomato is a fruit..

      Plus when they cook conch in coconut milk it all tastes the same, so that's my proof I think.

      Hmm – but is is a mussel.. and is a mussel an animal…?

      Hey – is the coconut meat veggie friendly??

      Really though – string up the conch bandits!

      Plus – DOE, do you do checks on those dive boats&zodiacs I see pulling up and acting "funny"?  I have been told of lobster being wrung-out of their shells.

      Apply Cow-Cod justice I say!!

  12. Anonymous says:

    Greed and Ignorance at its very best. This is why we have to have conservation laws and replenishment zones in the first place. Shame on these idiots. It is a daunting task to clean an skin 421 conch but hopefully they WILL benefit the needy. Years ago I witnessed a TRUCKLOAD of illegally caught turtle meat being disposed of at the dump. Thank goodness the powers that be seem to have out-grown this equally sorrowful stupidity.

  13. Anonymous says:

    These guys are not the only ones to blame…..

    A lot of the restuarants here will buy anything and everything they bring to them!

    They catch their daily limit, especially now during lobster season, sell it to a restuarant and then head out again to find more. Probably selling 3-4 times their daily limit every day……

    Now if the restuarants were responsible they would not buy from the same guy 3 times in a day………

    Granted these 2 fellows took it to the extreme but they are not the only ones out there doing this kind of thing….

    Comes back to the conservation law and giving the staff at the DOE some powers to sort this situation out!

  14. Anonymous says:

    I hope they are not out on bail, or they will be fishing for Coxswain Grouper in that Designated Spawning area in East End during tonight's full moon for their lawyer fees!

  15. Pit Bull says:

    “Culture”, “heritage”, “what fathers did”, “you don’t understand”, “planes leaving daily”.

    • Anonymous says:

      Rather laboured "satire", Pit Bull. Not up to your usual standard. Stick to the pithy, caustic comments or you will be in danger of losing your fan base.

      • Pit Bull says:

        Given your use of quotation marks, I doubt you were ever in my target audience.

        • Anonymous says:

          Quite true, Pit Bull, but it does not preclude me from commenting on your post does it old boy, what, what?

          • Pit Bull says:

            Not at all, it gives you another chance to prove that you have a chip on your shoulder about the English and that you are obsessed by what I have to say.

  16. Anonymous says:

    This is incredible!  I hope the Courts impose the maximum sentence! What idiots! What blatant disregard for the law and nature! 

  17. Anonymous says:

    Put then in a room with 421 marine environmentalist. Te he he…. 😉

  18. Anonymous says:

    Jail jail jail ! Big fine and lifetime ban from conch!

  19. Anonymous says:

    Everyone needs to stay alert for this type of poachers who will wipe out the conch and lobster for their own selfish uses.

    Drop a dime to the DoE and lets get these guys to Northward.

    • Shellfishlover says:

      I am not sure that conch and lobster are well suited to Northward.

  20. Anonymous says:

    Their fine should be that they have to be holding a empty conch shell on top their head whenever they are outside their home for the next five years!! Stupid pieces of you-know-what!!

  21. Green Hornet says:

    Greed and stupidity (well, there'll always be conch right?) rule

  22. Anonymous says:

    How f$&@ing IGNORANT can you be?

    Throw the book at them!

    An example needs to be made of these societal baggage idiots!

    Fisherman – ” we are just poor fisherman trying to make ends meet and we have no other skills”

    Judge – ” you are lazy disgraces to Cayman and know you can go learn a trade in prison! ”

    Short sighted SCUMBAGS!!!

  23. Anonymous says:

    ……and they probably had plenty of customers who were eagerly awaiting the conchs. Unfortunately, when people buy conch (or lobster) off someone else they don't care where it came from and whether is was taken from a marine park etc. All they know is that they will have fresh conch in the pot.

    All those "customers" are guilty by association!

  24. Anonymous says:

    I wish this were news but we all know it is common practice, that's why when you snorkel or dive you never see live conch just shells with a whole in the back.  At least they were caught but the law needs to be enforced much more.

  25. Anonymous says:

    Well you folks can figure out what if any punishment will befall these two thugs. My stance is that the illegal catch should not be donated, it should be destroyed.

    Everyone, including the folks at the Pines and at Department of Family Services should be disgusted by this blatent disregard for the environment. Instead they are smiling and rubbing their belly's after a tasty bowl of conch stew hoping the boys get caught again tomorrow.  

    • Anonymous says:

      The local restaurants that put conch on their menus at this time of year should also be regularly inspected because it is them that these a**holes are selling to.

      With the threat of selling illegally gained food on their menu they could help stfle this blatant poaching.

    • Anonymous says:

      While I personally think these two no-use people should be thrown in jail and never let out again, I totally disagree with destroying the conch.  These two should be made to do manual labour for every plate of food they get in prison, no exception.

      In a world where people die of starvation, to destroy something that can be eaten as food is wasteful and equally disgusting.

    • Anonymous says:

      To "destroy" it would be a double tragedy.  

  26. Anonymous says:


    • Anonymous says:

      get a new comment

      • Anonymous says:

        only when the caymankindness stops….

        • luvnkisses says:

          You forgot to add

          Britainkind- Badger Baiting;

          Canadakind- Seal Clubbing (with a big stick and not in a bar)

          Japankind- Shark Finning

          Chinakind- live cat boiling

          USAkind- Dog Fighting …and the list could go on an on. Every country has instances of severe animal cruelty and irresponsible use of natural resources, this is not a Cayman only problem so don't make out that it is. My comment does not mean however that these jerks are justified in taking 421 conch, they should be punished to the extent of the law, but you comment irks me as it is typical of the "not in my country" attitude that many people exhibit during their time in Cayman.

          • Anonymous says:

            Well said. You could add fox hunting to Britain's and Whale hunting to Japan's and Bull Fighting to Spain's. Of course if you are a developed country then all is well.    

          • Anonymous says:

            Exactly right.


            I am Canadian and this "Caymankind…zzzzzz" nonsense really gets under my skin too.   But then, I would guess that is exactly the poster's aim.  

  27. Anonymous says:

    What will these guys get? A slap on the wrist. it is because of people like this that the rest of us that want to go catchour limit and go home to enjoy a little conch stew cant find any. they should get a year for every one of those conch.

    • Anonymous says:

      If they feed them conch every day, they just might live long enough to serve THAT sentence.

  28. Anonymous says:

    Names please.

  29. Anonymous says:

    Thats why we need a Conservation Law. We have officers with no powers to do anything.

    This is not a one off arrest, it happens every week

    • anonymous says:

      SILLY COMMENT. There IS a law protecting these lobsters and conchs. If they arrested them…THEY HAVE POWERS.  You folks seem high on "conservation law gas" this week.

      • Anonymous says:

        Not a silly comment, Marine enforcement officers have NO powers to arrest! No nothing!

        Thats why they need the conservation law passed.

      • In The Know says:

        This comment is right on. Conservation Officers with the DoE have no powers of arrest. They have broken down, old euipment. They have no body armour or batons or pepper spray. They have outdated police training(which is irrelevant to their duties). XXXXX

  30. Anonymous says:

    Well done Marine Officers!!!  Please tell me te court will now punish these selfish fools to the highest extent of the law.  SHAME ON YOU WHOEVER YOU ARE…I wish your punishmet was left to me. 

  31. Cheese Face says:

    Yeah nice one guys, lets try and wipe those conch of the face of the earth. Damn you dumb!

  32. Pale rider says:

    Dear me, 421 Conchs,  Come on Guys you can do better than that.  I hope they were still in the shell that the Marine could put them back in the water.   Noo, Noo, Guys this is not good.  You need to have a big fine, not a prison sentence.  You should be fined  1,000. for each conch. 

  33. Brac Star says:

    421 conch? What a sweep! Did they have a cruise ship?

  34. Anonymous says:

    421 conch!  Those were some hungry mofos.  421!  I hope CNS follows up on this so that these persons can explain how taking 421conch is some sort of cultural birthright. 

    • Anonymous says:

      We should be mindful when buying conch from a relative or neighbour in that we trust the source.  Otherwise we could be inadvertently supporting an illegal catch.

    • Anonymous says:

      Do not cross the line my friend.

      I enjoy my conch fritters twice a year and would never justify the behaviour in this article.  However, I would not insult those who respect the law by insulting their culture either.

      No country or culture is without its share of Jack@sses!

      • Anonymous says:

        I would not insult those who respect the law by insulting their culture.  But we have all seen, far too many times, destructive and illegal behavior justified on the basis of culture and heritage.  That is the excuse I expect to hear from these two.


  35. Jungle Juice says:

    Lock them up and throw away the key! It's assholes like that that ruin these rescources for everyone else!

    I hope they get the book thrown at them and then get beaten with it just for good measure.

  36. Anonymous says:

    What a joke.