Update: Three poachers fined a total of $12,900

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An ATV and moose meat seized during an investigation into moose poaching in the La Scie area in which three men where arrested, charged and fined. — provincial government photo

Three men — two from La Scie and one from Brent’s Cove — were fined a total of $12,900 recently in provincial court in Corner Brook for nine offences under the Wildlife Act, the provincial government announced.

Stewart Morey, 57, was fined $5,400; Gordon Sullivan, 52, was fined $4,500; and Randy Budgell, 28, was fined $3,000.

In addition to the fines, the three men are prohibited from holding a moose or caribou licence for five years.

Morey also had his six-wheeled ATV — valued at approximately $5,000 — forfeited to the Crown.

The facts of the case state that in November 2010, members of the public had expressed concerns that widespread wildlife poaching was occurring in the La Scie area on the Baie Verte Peninsula.

As a result, enforcement officers investigated the killing of three moose, including a calf, by poachers near the community of La Scie. The initial investigation led officers to multiple kill sites where they gathered DNA samples from the remains.

The investigation found that Morey, Sullivan and Budgell were involved. The moose were illegally killed and transported to a remote cabin where it was butchered, and then the meat was transported by ATV to the homes of two of the suspects in nearby communities.

With the assistance of the RCMP, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, and officials with the Department of Natural Resources, officers executed search warrants and secured large quantities of moose meat from the suspects’ residences, which was then sent for DNA analysis.

The analysis confirmed the meat confiscated from freezers in the homes of the poachers was an exact match to the DNA from the samples gathered at the illegal kill sites some weeks earlier.

Before Judge Wayne Gorman, Morey and Budgell pleaded guilty to three counts of killing big game animals (three moose) while not being the holders of a licence to do so, while Sullivan pleaded guilty to three counts of illegal possession of a big game animal (moose).

A sentencing hearing was held Sept. 21 with Gorman’s decision on sentencing filed Oct. 1.



Organizations: RCMP, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Department of Natural Resources

Geographic location: La Scie

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Recent comments

  • Play by the rules
    October 11, 2012 - 16:11

    I don't agree with ever giving them tags again. Three years is a joke. If they are doing it to the moose, good chance they have a net or two hidden in the back of the shed as well. They think it's their right to poach......

  • meme
    October 10, 2012 - 22:10

    there are so many other things to worry about!!! kill an animal to feed the family big deal!! I have friends that can't find a doctor!!! Please start doing something to help!!

    • Comment
      October 11, 2012 - 09:07

      What does breaking the law have to do with a shortage of general practitioners?? Law enforcers do not recruit physicians.

  • Vic
    October 10, 2012 - 22:04

    Of course they should be punished. But how is it that these guys get significant fines and 5-year bans, when child abusers and people convicted of sexual assaults, for example, often get away with much less?!

  • David
    October 10, 2012 - 21:02

    This is one ignorant island teeming with hillbillies.....and it always will be . That is all.

  • emily
    October 10, 2012 - 19:19

    what is going to happen with that moose?

  • seriously
    October 10, 2012 - 19:09

    5 year ban from holding a license? what a joke. It takes a person 3-4 years to get a license on the avalon the way the pools work. These guys have to wait only a couple more years.

  • KR
    October 10, 2012 - 16:36

    Yes, we have too many moose but poaching is wrong, wrong, wrong.

  • Johhny
    October 10, 2012 - 16:19

    3 fewer morons wanderings around with guns in the woods - win win situation for everyone. Safer for hikers, safer for anyone who wants to enjoy nature instead of just trying to destroy it.

  • flexxa
    October 10, 2012 - 15:23

    ...not withstanding the over abundance of moose the problem is the continued attitude towards poaching of any type. The attitude of "I don't have to follow the rules" by a select few is disgusting.

  • Cherry Hill
    October 10, 2012 - 12:18

    3 less moose to worry about on the highways.... I don't see anything wrong with that

    • sc
      October 10, 2012 - 14:54

      Re. comment by C. Hill. Unfortunately you misunderstand the contents of this article. It does not discuss whether there should be more or fewer moose on or near a highway. It's about 3 people who chose to break the law simply because they felt it did not apply to them. Your comments suggest that you (and probably many other people in NL) also feel that laws can be ignored if they pose an inconvenience in any way or if you simply don't like them. It must be frustrating for the various police and other officers who are committed to preserving wildlife in this province when so many people simply want to kill everything that moves and feel entitled to do so whenever the mood suites them. It must also be frustrating to these officers that all their hard work resulted in such a light fine being imposed on these three lawbreakers. Perhaps if the government and courts took the problem of poaching more seriously and introduced stiffer penalties there would be fewer people willing to break the law. Perhaps something in the neighbourhood of $10,000 per animal would be a suitable deterrent. Furthermore, does anyone believe that prohibiting these poachers from getting a licence to hunt will deter them from repeating the crime? They've already demonstrated their contempt for the laws of this province.

  • LYMP
    October 10, 2012 - 11:58

    Looks good on em!