Joint Committee on Statutory Instruments Fourteenth Report


Memorandum by the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food


  1. The Select Committee has requested submission of a memorandum on the following point:

    "Article 5(1) provides for the recovery of fines for (amongst other offences) "an offence under article 10 of this Order". Should this have been a reference to "article 11"?"

  2. The Committee is correct in suggesting that the reference in article 5(1) to "an offence under article 10 of this Order" should have been to an offence under "article 11" instead. This is a typographical error which the Ministry is grateful to the Committee for drawing to its attention.

  3. As explained in a voluntary memorandum submitted to the Committee at the same time as this Order was laid [not printed], this Order provides for the enforcement of Commission Regulation (EC) No. 304/2000 which established emergency measures for the recovery of the stock of cod in the Irish Sea (ICES Division VIIa) for the period 14 February 2000 to 30 April 2000. These measures cease to have effect at the end of this period and therefore both the Commission Regulation and this Order have only a short operative life.

  4. Article 5(1) of this Order is intended to provide for the recovery of fines imposed by a magistrates' court where a person is convicted of any offence created by the Order. The reference to "article 10" in article 5(1) was intended to be a reference to "article 11" which makes it an offence to obstruct a British sea-fishery officer, or other relevant officer, when exercising powers conferred on him by the Order. Whilst the Ministry would normally amend the Order to correct this mistake, in these present circumstances the Ministry considers that the courts existing powers under Part III of the Magistrates' Courts Act 1980 and section 32 of the Powers of Criminal Courts Act 1973 for the enforcement of fines will be sufficient for the recovery of fines imposed by a magistrates' court for a breach of article 11 of this Order.

  5. Therefore, it is hoped that the Committee will understand why the Ministry has decided not to amend the Order in this particular instance.

14th March 2000

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