Two friends who stole a fishing trawler had to be rescued from the Irish Sea after getting lost as they tried to sail it home.
The men decided to jump into the vessel after missing their ferry to Dublin, but realised they didn't know how to handle it and rang for help, hoping to be towed into Ireland. Unfortunately for the hapless pair they had only made it 10 miles out to sea when they lost their way, and a major operation by HM Coastguard, an RNLI lifeboat and RAF helicopter saw them back in North Wales.
The men, aged 18 and 20, stole the 30ft inshore trawler, named Le-Bon Heur in Holyhead, Anglesey, on Saturday night after they missed the last ferry to Dublin. North Wales Police held them for a short time before releasing them with cautions.
However, they were later re-arrested on suspicion of causing criminal damage after the boat's owner, 38-year-old Paul Jones, made a complaint that they had wrecked the engine of the £40,000 vessel. They were questioned by officers but released without charge.
Mr Jones said he was "disgusted" by the decision.
"The police told me that because this was their first offence and they are Irish, the courts here can't do much about it," he said.
"Apparently, they can't put them in prison, they can't make them do community service and they can't make them pay me back any money.
"I'm just disgusted that there is this loophole in the law that has let them get away with stealing my boat, threatening my livelihood and causing a rescue that cost thousands of pounds.
"It is beyond belief." He added: "They have obviously thrashed the engine, because there wasn't a drop of oil left in the sump. This is the busiest time of the year for me. If I don't make money in June, July and August, I'm finished."