• David Charles Ward v. Deputy Director of Wildlife

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    Decision Date: January 22, 2015

    Panel: Alan Andison

    Keywords: Wildlife Act – s. 24; angling licence; contravention; fine; suspension; consent order

    David Ward appealed the decision of the Deputy Director (the “Deputy Director”), Fish, Wildlife and Habitat Management, Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations (the “Ministry”), to suspend Mr. Ward’s angling licence privileges for two years.

    From 2006 to 2012, Mr. Ward received five violation tickets and one warning for angling in contravention of regulations under the Wildlife Act. Two of the tickets and the warning were issued in 2012, after he had served a one-year suspension of his angling privileges in 2010. The two tickets issued in 2012 were for using prohibited fishing gear, and failing to record a Chinook salmon caught in non-tidal waters. The warning was also for using prohibited fishing gear. The Deputy Director concluded that Mr. Ward had been given sufficient penalties for the offences which occurred before 2010, but the tickets and previous suspension were insufficient to deter Mr. Ward from re-offending, and therefore, a further suspension should be imposed. Based on the circumstances, the Deputy Director decided that the offences which occurred after 2010 warranted a two-year suspension under section 24 of the Wildlife Act.

    Mr. Ward appealed the Deputy Director’s decision to the Board, on the basis that the penalty was too harsh in the circumstances. He submitted that the offences since 2010 did not warrant a suspension. He also submitted that he had promptly paid the fines associated with the tickets, he took responsibility for his actions, and that fishing is very important to him.

    Before the appeal was heard by the Board, the parties negotiated an agreement to settle the appeal. With the parties consent, the Board ordered that the two-year suspension of Mr. Ward’s angling privileges be reduced to a 17-month suspension.

    Accordingly, the appeal was allowed, in part.