Fisheries compliance reports

Documents released under the Official Information Act (OIA) after requests for reports related to fisheries operations between 1996 and 2012.


Reasons for fisheries operations

Fisheries operations between 1996 and 2012 were done for a range of reasons.

  • Some were to get information to support the management of fisheries.
  • Others were done to detect or respond to non-compliance with fisheries laws.

These operations weren't the only compliance activities to monitor commercial fishing during these years. Other investigations led to prosecution action.

Operations had various objectives 

The varied nature of the objectives of the operations is reflected in the information that is being released. In some cases, there is information regarding enforcement activity directly associated with an operation or alternatively, there is a description of the activity and its purpose to support the management of fisheries.

Most of these are assessment reports designed to enable us to decide if action needs to be taken. For example, if we should begin a formal investigation, undertake educative measures, formulate policy, identify areas for improvement, or help focus our compliance activity.

Released documents

Operation Year Information releasedSubject of Operational activity
Blade 1996 Internal memo related to Operation Blade [PDF, 880 KB] Hoki reports (UTF – untrimmed fillet and trimmed fillet declarations)
Kenwood 1999 Summary of Facts document from prosecution [PDF, 1.2 MB] Hoki bycatch not reported
Box II 2007 Documents cannot be found – Refused under s18e of the OIA Paua poaching in South Island
Turn Up 2003 Operational orders document [PDF, 1.5 MB] Chatham Islands regarding paua recovery rates
Horse 2004 Summary of Facts document from prosecution [PDF, 577 KB] Southern Blue Whiting discarding
Purse 2004

Misreporting investigation  [PDF, 442 KB]

Internal memo and job sheet outlining operation. Note other documents cannot be found despite a reasonable search and are withheld under section 18(e) of the OIA. However, the then Ministry of Fisheries issued a press release about these proceedings.

Ministry of Fisheries press release – Scoop website

Misreporting investigation
Mini 2004 The summary of Operation Mini is in the Operation Maxi investigation report [PDF, 5.8 MB] Hoki discarding
Maxi 2005 Investigation report [PDF, 5.8 MB] High-grading of Hoki follows Operation Mini
Mega 2008 Operation orders document [PDF, 7.2 MB] Follow-up operation of Mini and Maxi involving the use of RNZAF assets
UZ 2010 Job sheets and warrant information related to the operation [PDF, 3.2 MB] Reporting of wholesale fish purchases
Bronto 2011 Summary prepared for risk profile report [PDF, 1.6 MB]  Regarding the West Coast South Island Hoki fishery – analysis to feed into risk assessment of the stock
Apate 2011 Operation orders document [PDF, 5.5 MB] Operation to support the first part of Phase 2 of Bronto
Apate II 2012 Operation orders document [PDF, 2.2 MB] Operation to support the second part of Phase 2 of Bronto
Trois 2012 Summary prepared of risk profile report [PDF, 1.8 MB] Southern Blue Whiting – analysis to feed into risk assessment of the stock

Reasons for withholding some information

Some material has been withheld under these sections of the Official Information Act 1982:

  • 6(c) – to avoid prejudice the maintenance of the law, including the prevention, investigation, and detection of offences, and the right to a fair trial;
  • 9(2)(a) – to protect the privacy of natural persons;
  • 9(2)(b)(ii) – to protect information where the making available of the information would be likely unreasonably to prejudice the commercial position of the person who supplied or who is the subject of the information;
  • 9(2)(ba)(i) – to protect protect information which is subject to an obligation of confidence or which any person has been or could be compelled to provide under the authority of any enactment, where the making available of the information would be likely to prejudice the supply of similar information, or information from the same source, and it is in the public interest that such information should continue to be supplied;
  • 9(2)(h) – to maintain legal professional privilege; and
  • 18(e) – as the information requested does not exist or, despite reasonable efforts, cannot be found.

In some cases, several documents are released under the OIA to provide information on an operation in the absence of a formal investigation report being available.

  • 16(e) - where information may be made available in one or more of the following ways… by giving an excerpt or summary of the contents.
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