British Fishing Boats Act 1983

JurisdictionUK Non-devolved
Citation1983 c. 8


British Fishing BoatsAct 1983

1983 CHAPTER 8

An Act to prohibit the fishing for and trans-shipment of sea fish by or from British fishing boats, in areas specified by order made by the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food and the Secretaries of State respectively concerned with the sea fishing industry in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, unless those boats satisfy conditions prescribed by an order of those Ministers with respect to the nationality of members of the crew; and to prohibit the landing of sea fish in the United Kingdom from British fishing boats that do not satisfy conditions so prescribed.

[28th March 1983]

Be it enacted by the Queen's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:—

S-1 Restrictions on fishing, etc., by British fishing boats.

1 Restrictions on fishing, etc., by British fishing boats.

(1) The operations mentioned in subsection (2) below may not be carried out by or from a British fishing boat unless the boat is qualified in accordance with an order made by the Ministers under this subsection for use in carrying out operations of that description.

(2) Those operations are—

(a ) fishing for sea fish in any area for the time being specified in an order made by the Ministers;

(b ) the trans shipment of sea fish in any such area; and

(c ) the landing of sea fish in the United Kingdom.

References below in this Act to a restricted fishing area are references to any area for the time being specified in an order made by the Ministers under this subsection.

(3) An order under subsection (1) above prescribing qualifications for British fishing boats for use in carrying out any such operations may prescribe conditions for qualification with respect to the nationality of members of the crew of a fishing boat, or of any proportion of those members specified in the order.

(4) The conditions so prescribed shall be such as appear to the Ministers to be necessary or expedient for the protection of the British sea fishing industry; but any such conditions shall not discriminate between British citizens and persons who are nationals of any other member State.

(5) Where a British fishing boat is not for the time being qualified under this section for use in carrying out operations of any description mentioned in subsection (2)(a ) or (b ) above in a restricted fishing area, its fishing gear shall be stowed in accordance with an order made by the Ministers at any time when it is within such an area.

(6) If this section is contravened in the case of any fishing boat the master, the owner and the charterer (if any) of the boat shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding 50,000 or on conviction on indictment to a fine.

(7) The court by or before which a person is convicted of an offence under subsection (6) above may order the forfeiture of any fish or fishing gear found in the boat in relation to which the offence was committed or taken or used by any person from the boat; and, in Scotland, any fish or fishing gear forfeited under this subsection may be destroyed or disposed of as the court may direct.

(8) Any power to make an order under this section shall be exercisable by statutory instrument, which shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.

S-2 Powers of British sea-fishery officers in relation to British fishing boats in restricted fishing areas.

2 Powers of British sea-fishery officers in relation to British fishing boats in restricted fishing areas.

(1) The powers conferred by the following provisions of this section are exercisable by British sea-fishery officers, in relation to any British fishing boat within a restricted fishing area, for the purpose of enforcing the provisions of section 1 of this Act.

(2) Any such officer may go on board any such boat, with or without persons assigned to assist him in his duties, and for that purpose may require the boat to stop and do anything else which will facilitate the boarding of the boat.

(3) Any such officer may require the attendance of the master and other persons on board any boat he has boarded under subsection (2) above and may make any examination and inquiry which appears to him to be necessary for the purpose of enforcing the provisions of section 1 of this Act.

(4) Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (3) above, any such officer—

(a ) may require any person on board any such boat to produce any document he has with him on board that is or may be relevant for determining his nationality and any document relating to the boat, to its fishing operations or other operations ancillary to its fishing operations or to persons on board which is in his custody or possession, and may take copies of any such document;

(b ) for the purpose of ascertaining whether an offence under section 1 of this Act has been committed in relation to any such boat, may search the boat for any such document and may require any person on board the boat to do anything which appears to him to be necessary for facilitating the search; and

(c ) if he has reason to suspect that any such offence has been committed in relation to any such boat, may seize and detain any such document produced to him or found on board for the purpose of enabling the document to be used as evidence in proceedings for the offence;

but nothing in paragraph (c ) above shall permit any document required by law to be carried on board the boat to be seized except while the boat is detained in a port.

(5) Where it appears to any such officer that an offence under section 1 of this Act has been committed in relation to any fishing boat, he may—

(a ) require the master of the boat to take, or may himself take, the boat and its crew to the port which appears to him to be the nearest convenient port; and

(b ) detain or require the master to detain the boat in the port;

and where such an officer detains or requires the detention of a boat he shall serve on the master a notice in writing stating that the boat will be or is required to be detained until the notice is withdrawn by the service on the master of a further notice in writing...

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