QUEBEC, March 2, 2006 - Five people entered guilty
pleas in Alberta Provincial Court in Wainwright, to breaking provincial
and federal wildlife regulations. On February 2, 2006, the Court fined
the five people a total of $26,750, and barred each individual from hunting
in Alberta for five years.
The five Quebec residents pleaded guilty to unlawful possession of wildlife,
wasting the edible meat of a big game animal, transporting illegally-taken
game across provincial boundaries and obtaining hunting licences when
ineligible. They are Rémi Poulin, 47 years old, of St-Joseph-de-Beauce,
Mario Pépin, 46 years old, Véronique Lévesque, 27
years old, and Yvon Poulin, 38 years old, all of St-Benjamin, and Bernard
Métivier, 42 years old, of St-Nicolas. The offences involved white-tailed
deer and mule deer. In most instances, only the antlers had been taken,
not the carcasses of the deer.
These convictions were the result of an investigation by the Fish and
Wildlife Division of Alberta Sustainable Resource Development, with assistance
from the Wildlife Enforcement Division of Environment Canada, Quebec Region.
Saskatchewan wildlife officers also participated in the investigation.
The hunting offences first came to light in November 2003, when wildlife
officers in Saskatchewan intercepted Quebec residents poaching deer in
that province and learned they were also operating in Alberta.
After receiving this information, wildlife officers in Alberta began
an investigation and determined that an organized network of poachers
from Quebec was operating in Alberta. Officers used a variety of methods
to gather evidence, including forensic analysis by the Edmonton Police
Service of photographs the poachers had in their possession, and DNA analysis
of wildlife parts. It became evident that deer parts the poachers were
found with in Saskatchewan had actually been obtained at various locations
in Alberta. Environment Canada officers in Quebec assisted with taking
statements and gathering intelligence, helping bring this case to a successful
Environment Canada invites the public to report poaching and interprovincial
or international smuggling of wildlife by calling 1-800-463-4311.
For more information, please contact:
Wildlife Enforcement Division
Fish and Wildlife Division
Sustainable Resource Development
Dave EaleyCommunicationsAlbertaSustainable Resource DevelopmentEdmonton(780)