LATEST: Six men in court on Wash fisheries charges

The owner and skippers of five fishing boats have appeared in court

The owner and skippers of five fishing boats have appeared in court

Six men have appeared in court this afternoon to deny accusations of dredging for shellfish in a closed area of the Wash.

John Lake, 75, now of Spring Lane, Shouldham, faces five charges of owning vessels which took shellfish in contravention of fisheries regulations.

His five co-defendants are all charged with being masters of the vessels taking part in the alleged activity.

They are Robert Brewster, 56, of Richmond Close, Boston; Mark Freestone, 43, of Stone Close, Watlington; Kieron Johnson, 24, of Front Way, North Lynn, King’s Lynn; Leigh Lake, 34, of Fir Tree Drive, West Winch and Deividas Pusinkas, 30, of Kingcup, Gaywood, King’s Lynn.

All six defendants entered not guilty pleas to the charges against them through their barrister, James Earl, during a hearing before magistrates in King’s Lynn this afternoon.

The alleged offences are said to have been committed on July 20 last year at or about the Roger Sand in the Wash, off the coast of King’s Lynn

Andrew Oliver, prosecuting on behalf of the Eastern Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority, said he expected the case should be able to proceed to trial fairly quickly.

All six men were bailed to return to the court on May 17, when their trial is listed to begin. The case is expected to last for three days.