03/12/2013 11:54 EDT | Updated 05/12/2013 05:12 EDT

'Missing' B.C. fisherman wasn't in the drink, he was in the pokey

NANAIMO, B.C. - When the Mounties were called in to help search for a fisherman thought to be missing from a fishboat off Nanaimo, B.C., they didn't have to look far — it turned out he was in one of their cells.

It was originally believed the man was aboard the 25-metre fishing boat when it left Nanaimo about 3 a.m. Tuesday, and the search was launched a few hours later when he couldn't be found on the vessel.

Three coast guard vessels, including a hovercraft based in Richmond, began scouring the waters between Nanaimo and Ladysmith in the pre-dawn hours.

The Nanaimo Mounties were also called to see if they could find the man somewhere on shore, and within an hour they discovered he was locked up at their own detachment.

Constable Gary O’Brien says the 25-year-old Prince Rupert man had been arrested Monday night for an "altercation", but he won't be facing any charges. (The Canadian Press,CKAY)