Company and director fined $12,000 for illegal native timber milling

The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry has successfully prosecuted Te Awamutu company Land Milling Limited and its director Nicholas Ashmore in relation to offences against the Forests Act 1949 and the Forestry (Indigenous Timber Milling) Regulations 1993.

The court sentenced the defendants to a total of $12,000 in fines and costs for the breaches. MAF

Land Milling Limited and Ashmore pleaded guilty in the Hamilton District Court on 3 September 2009 to Forests Act offences relating to the milling of indigenous timber that was not harvested in accordance with an approved Annual Logging Plan, and failing to provide quarterly sawmilling records as required by the Regulations.

Under the Forests Act it is illegal to mill timber not harvested pursuant to an Annual Logging Plan.

Dean Winter, Compliance Manager of the MAF Sustainable Programmes directorate, said that the successful prosecution sends a strong message to others who harvest more native trees than they are entitled to.

“MAF takes breaches of the Forests Act very seriously.  New Zealanders place significant value on our native forests – they are part of our cultural heritage. Therefore it is important that they are managed sustainably.

“To ensure this, MAF requires an approved Annual Logging Plan along with a Sustainable Forest Management Permit, as well as quarterly milling return records to show the timber being removed and milled is done so sustainably. Land Milling Ltd has admitted it did not follow these rules.’’

Mr Winter said MAF investigates all identified breaches of the Forests Act and Regulations.

“The message to forestry and milling companies who fell and mill native timber is work with us to keep your logging plans and returns in order, because the alternative is to end up in court.’’

One comment on “Company and director fined $12,000 for illegal native timber milling

  1. Not sure how much they removed, but some of these folks ought to be thankful that they are not fined 10 times more.

    At least the news gets out about this kind of action, and it probably has quite a bit of effective deterent value.


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