Morro Bay boat operator to pay $12,000 fine for breaking fishing rules

March 5, 2024

The Endeavor


The operator of a commercial fishing boat based at Morro Bay has agreed to pay $12,000 in civil penalties to settle a case over him failing to abide by fishing restrictions, according to the San Luis Obispo County District Attorney’s Office.

Brad Leage, the son of the late George Leage, who had served on the Morro Bay City Council, operates a 55-foot commercial charter fishing vessel named the Endeavor. The boat regularly takes dozens of paying passengers on deep sea fishing trips in waters off the coast of San Luis Obispo County.

Brad Leage

In 2019 and 2021, undercover California Department of Fish and Wildlife officers participated in two sport fishing trips with Leage on the Endeavor. On both trips, Leage admitted he inaccurately reported the number of crew fishing on the trip and exceeded the legal catch limits. Leage also admitted that some customers exceeded legal fish limits and caused the waste of fish, according to the district attorney’s office.

A stipulated civil judgment requires Leage to pay penalties totaling $12,000, as well as to accurately report the number of fish caught on board during sport fishing trips. Likewise, the judgment prohibits the crew of the Endeavor from fishing on paid customer trips during the 2024 fishing season. 

In addition to the civil case, the district attorney’s office prosecuted Leage criminally. In the criminal case, Leage agreed to follow applicable commercial fishing laws for the next year, as well as to comply with the terms of the stipulated civil judgment.

“The California Department of Fish and Wildlife rely upon commercial fishermen to accurately report fishing activities for the successful management of fisheries off our Central Coast,” Assistant District Attorney Eric Dobroth said in a statement. “The opportunity to take fish and wildlife resources in California requires a high degree of mutual trust between the public and law enforcement. Commercial fishing regulations exist to ensure the health of our coastal ecosystems for the public’s continued enjoyment and for a sustainable commercial fishing industry.”

Fish and Wildlife personnel investigated the civil case, while Deputy District Attorney Kenneth Jorgensen, of the Consumer and Environmental Protection Unit, prosecuted it. Deputy District Attorneys Amy Fitzpatrick and Sean Baird prosecuted Leage in the criminal case.


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Wasn’t George Leage the guy who used to paint his own private parking space on the Embarcadero, always claiming it was legal? Guess self interpretation of the law runs in the family.

Never mind the Fish and Wildlife cherry pick their enforcement. On the other side of the coast range it’s about the deer and forget the fish. Don’t get me started on the lack of protection for the inland fisheries.

Just trying to make an honest living. Brad doesn’t deserve this overreach. We have the most controlled fisheries, while other nations decimated theirs. Small entrepreneurs are being shit on by California. This November, make a change!

I’m with Spud. He’s just trying to make an honest living by lying about what he’s doing. Let small entrepreneurs decimate our fisheries too!