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Last Updated: Monday, 12 February 2007, 09:23 GMT
New drive to net salmon poachers
Salmon leaping
There are many highly regarded salmon rivers in the Grampian area
A crackdown on salmon poaching in north east Scotland has been unveiled.

Grampian Police launched Operation Salmo in a bid to net poachers, many of whom officers said operated in well-organised gangs.

Operation Salmo was first run in Strathclyde and is now being rolled out across Scotland.

It is designed to highlight the serious crime of salmon poaching in Grampian and the damaging knock-on effect it has on the wider economy.

'Superb fish'

Dave MacKinnon, wildlife crime officer for Grampian Police, said: "Here in the north east we have some of the best salmon rivers in the country, including the Rivers Esk, Dee and Spey.

"We have a fantastic natural resource in these fish which attracts many people from all over the world to the area for high quality fishing in wonderful surrounds.

"The illegal activity carried out by individuals - and more importantly commercial poaching gangs - can have both a serious environmental and economic effect on the river and wider community."

He said he hoped closer working relations with water bailiffs would lead to joint operations in problem areas.

Roger Knight, director of the Spey Fishery Board, said: "We look forward to strengthening our already close ties with the police in order to control the poaching of these superb fish."

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01 Feb 07 |  South of Scotland

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