State News

Nov 21, 2013 1:41 PM

South Texan Busted for Catching Oversized Red Drum

AUSTIN - Texas Parks and Wildlife says a South Texas man's Facebook bragging about his red drum catch has landed him more than $5,000 in fines and penalties.

The complaints started coming in at the beginning of the month about a photo showing the man with nine oversized red drum in a pickup truck bed. It included a caption of "just for fun."

Officials say the original owner of the photo deleted it the next day, but it was too late. Outraged fishermen across the Gulf Coast started sharing the photo between themselves and with authorities.

Game Wardens tracked down 30-year-old Luis Castro in Willacy County. They say it was his brother who first posted the photo to Facebook.

Castro went to trial before Willacy County Justice of the Peace George Solice on Wednesday. According to Texas Parks and Wildlife, the judge told him, "It was an obscene number of fish that you caught. We are all living paycheck-to-paycheck but none of us are going hungry. It was completely unnecessary to take that many fish."

Game Wardens say Castro did not have a saltwater fishing license. The law allows a catch of three redfish per day. They must be between 20 and 28 inches long. Only one oversized redfish can be caught, and only with a properly completed redfish tag attached to it.

Castro was fined $2,600 and must pay $2,645.91 in restitution.

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