A one-year fishing license for North Carolina residents costs $15. For out-of-staters, it’s $30. A crew member didn’t have one in the Big Rock Blue Marlin Fishing Tournament and it will apparently cost the winning boat $912,825 in prize money.
“It hurts,” said Andy Thomossan, whose Citation boat caught an 883-pound blue marlin. “We didn’t do anything wrong. But one of our people did. He failed to get a fishing license, but we didn’t know it. He told us he had it. He didn’t. So you take a man for his word, you know?”
Thomossan declined to identify the crew member and said there would be no leeway granted by officials of the 1.66 million dollar tournament.
“They’re taking it away, everything,” Thomossan said. “The fish is disqualified. We’re disqualified. So that’s the end of it.”
Under tournament rules, anyone fishing aboard a vessel must have a North Carolina fishing license, including the captain, the mate and anglers.