R v. Biggin

In Due Diligence, Fish Cases, Offences on (Updated )

This case involved a commercial crab fisher whose marked crab traps were found well within a closed area. After a useful review of the law regarding due diligence, mistake of fact, the definition of "fishing" and the onus of proof, the court rejected a due diligence defence on the following basis:

In this case, the crab pots were well within the closed area and this is an area that Mr. Biggin is very familiar with. When Mr. Biggin set his crab pots in this area, he must have known, or ought to have known, regardless of how he read or interpreted his GPS system, that he had entered into area 13. To set crab pots outside of the area described in your licence indicates a degree of carelessness or negligence on Mr. Biggin’s behalf that refutes any suggestion of having acted reasonably or diligently. Thus, Mr. Biggin has failed to establish that he acted with all due diligence or by reason of a mistake of fact. (para 41)