Poacher fined after taking photo of himself using illegal speargun to hunt salmon

A poacher who used an illegal speargun to hunt salmon was caught out by his "trophy" snaps on his phone.

Jonathan Davies, 24, used a harpoon gun to capture the fish during "a salmon run" with a poaching gang.

A court heard he then posed for a photo wearing swimming trunks and a snorkel - holding his prize catch in one hand and the speargun in the other.

Davies was caught when police checked his phone to find the trophy picture of him smiling with his catch.

A court heard he was part of an illegal salmon and trout poaching ring on the River Neath in South Wales.

He admitted using a prohibited implement to take salmon and fishing without a licence and was fined £400.

Erin Smyth, senior environmental crime officer with Natural Resources Wales, said she hoped the prosecutions would send a warning to would-be poachers who "think they can flout the rules and take advantage of our environment".

Salmon, sea trout and freshwater fish are important to our local economy, attracting angling tourists and contributing some £75m to the Welsh economy – so it's important we look after them.

Erin Smyth, Natural Resources Wales

The poaching ring from Glynneath, South Wales, went on illegal fishing trips between October and July 2013.

Four others admitted using a prohibited implement and handling salmon in suspicious circumstances.

They appeared at Swansea Magistrates Court where they were given fines between £80 and £160.

Each was told to pay £300 costs.