Immigrant angler arrested after firing shotgun into Fenland river in attempt to catch fish

AN IMMIGRANT angler was arrested for firing a shotgun into a Fenland river in the hope of landing fresh pike.

A police helicopter and armed officers were scrambled to Beggars Bridge along the Twenty Foot River, near Coates, after reports of gun shots along the riverbank.

The group of men - all believed to be Eastern European - were questioned by police and a 33-year-old male was arrested.

The man, thought to be from Kazakhstan, was released on police bail pending further enquiries.

The group were thought to have been carrying nets with them to take the fish away to eat. While most British anglers throw the fish back, some Eastern Europeans are culturally known to eat them.

A police spokesman said: “We had a report that a man had fired a shotgun into the river.

“The arrested man was with some other men and the gun had been put in a car by the time we arrived.”

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A spokesman for the Environment Agency said: “Some people steal fish to eat and others illegally move fish to another water; we will actively seek enforcement action in both cases.

“Under new bylaws it is an offence to remove any native fish that are caught.”