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Man who killed 38 albatross gets 300 hours

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 23/11/2016

File pic © Franck Gueffier/Biosphoto/Getty Images File pic A commercial fisherman who caused the death of 38 albatross has been sentenced to 300 hours community work.

In the Nelson District Court on Wednesday Judge Tony Zohrab said his evident inability to pay was behind the decision to order community work, rather than be fined up to $19,000.

However, Forest & Bird says the sentence is woefully inadequate, and won't deter future criminal behaviour on the ocean.

CEO Kevin Hague said the fact that he was prosecuted was a rarity, and applauds the Ministry of Primary Industries for doing so.

"However his sentence will do very little to deter fishing industry criminals from continuing to flout the laws protecting our oceans and the animals that live there ... This sentence amounts to eight hours of community service per bird."

Daniel Joseph Smyth admitted to the charge of failing to take proper steps to prevent the death of 38 endangered albatross by failing to deter the birds as required by law.

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