Two men fined for excavating creek

Two men who illegally dug up Howes Creek near 16 Avenue and 264 Street in Aldergrove have been fined $1,100 for violating the Fisheries Act.

Two men who illegally dug up Howes Creek near 16 Avenue and 264 Street in Aldergrove have been fined $1,100 for violating the Fisheries Act.

Shaminder Mallhi pleaded guilty to two counts of “harmful alteration of fish habitat” for excavating the creek to improve water flow through his property and was fined $1,000 for the Oct. 25, 2008 digging.

Mallhi’s friend,  Agyapal Grewal, was fined $100 after he was convicted of one count of excavating the creek.

At Grewal’s Surrey Provincial Court trial in April, his lawyer argued there was no proof the digging caused any damage to fish habitat.

The prosecutor said no proof of actual harm was required, only evidence that the digging had been carried out.

Judge James Jardine agreed with the prosecution, noting that the record of Grewal’s interview by a fisheries officer showed he knew the work would interfere with a fishery.

While Grewal was not on the scene when the excavation work was carried out, the judge said Grewal arranged for the rental of an excavator and did not tell the operator of the machine about the fishery issue.