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Macduff Shellfish trawler finally released after week long detainment

By Ewan Malcolm

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A MACDUFF Trawler that became the centre of a row over post-Brexit fishing rights was released on Wednesday, November 3.

The Cornelis Gert Jan was relesed after a court ruling on Wednesday.
The Cornelis Gert Jan was relesed after a court ruling on Wednesday.

The Cornelis Gert Jan had been detained by French authorities off the coast of Normandy after it was accused of fishing for scallops without a licence.

Macduff Shellfish had been told to pay £125,000 to release the vessel with the skipper threatened with a £63,000 fine.

However, the business confirmed that the vessel had been released without charge after a court ruling.

Andrew Brown, Director of Public Affairs for Macduff Shellfish, said: "We have been informed that our vessel, the Cornelis Gert Jan, has been released by the French authorities.

"The court determined that no bond was required for the release of the vessel. We are pleased to have this matter resolved and delighted that our crew and vessel are now able to return home.

"The crew have acted with calmness and professionalism throughout the entire incident. They are in good spirits, looking forward to returning home and are grateful for all the messages of support received from the British public."

Environment Secretary George Eustice had mistakenly said that the vessel had been released on Tuesday, later claiming that he had "misspoken".

The vessel has now returned to its base of operations in Shoreham, West Sussex on Wednesday evening.

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