Fisherman broke bail terms

Deck boss missed boat after being arrested in Bideford pub

A YOUNG fisherman missed his early morning boat after he defied court orders banning him from entering Bideford town centre.

Daniel Fishleigh, 21, of Fort Mead Close, Barnstaple, was due to go to sea on his stepfather’s boat on Wednesday morning but ended up before North Devon Magistrates after being spotted in a Bideford pub.

Fishleigh was caught on CCTV entering Crabby Dick’s public house in Cooper Street at 5.40pm the previous evening. When a police officer explained that he was being arrested for a breach of his bail conditions, he replied, “who grassed me up”. In court, he pleaded guilty to a breach of his conditions.

The court heard how the defendant was granted conditional bail on June 11 2010 in relation to a public order offence of affray and two offences for possession of knives, all alleged to have taken place a month earlier.

He was told he must continue to reside at the address at Fort Mead Close; forbidden to contact prosecution witnesses; and banned from Bideford except the bus station and quay, to enable him to continue working.

Prosecuting solicitor David Barnes said Fishleigh had since been arrested four times for breach of bail conditions.

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He said: “He has clearly ignored his bail conditions and there is concern that he was found in Bideford where he was not supposed to be.”

In defence, Tony Dart said Fishleigh was a deck boss, the second in command on his stepfather’s fishing boat. He said had been regularly going to sea since October 12 and that he had just returned from working six days at sea but had “strayed off the path” after bumping into friends he had not seen for a long time.

He said: “He has been on bail since June 11 last year and there have been a couple of breaches but he has done pretty well for the last four months and there is no suggestion that he has re-offended.

“He was due back on the boat at 5am this morning and was due to go out to sea for a day or two; he’s lost that money now so he’s learnt the hard way.

“He shouldn’t have been side-tracked by friends; he was not drinking and went into the pub to eat a sandwich.”

Presiding magistrate, Michael Downward, granted Fishleigh bail with the same three conditions originally imposed by the court.

“I am reluctant to grant you bail and each time you appear before this bench that reluctance increases,” he said.

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