When Americans imagine poaching, they often think of far off lands and unscrupulous hunters looking for big gains through the exotic animal trade. But many Americans would be surprised to learn that poaching happens at home all the time. For example, game wardens in the state of Nevada recently broke up a poaching ring that was illegally targeting deer.
Game wardens in Nevada recently arrested four men, ages 30 to 36, after an investigation into crimes relating to the state’s wildlife. The officials used various methods to catch the men, including reviewing photographs, which helped the game wardens identify no less than two of the suspects. Interestingly, the other two suspects were linked to the case through social media.
After a thorough investigation including DNA analysis of samples of deer parts found in the suspects’ possession, the wardens were able to determine that at least three of the suspects had illegally killed a total of no less than 6 deer. They were also able to determine that it was likely that the group had illegally harvested game fish, migratory birds, and even protected migratory birds.
In all, the suspects were eventually convicted of various misdemeanor crimes, including unlawful possession of mule deer and firearms charges. The men were assessed on penalties ranging from a $690 fine to 249 days in jail. This case is not the first case in which a group of men ran a poaching ring. In July the same suspects were accused of several poaching violations as well as various firearms violations.
Game wardens across the United States are continuing to battle the poaching of diverse species, as the populace increasingly desires to hunt and trap diverse plants and animals for both trophy and food purposes. Game wardens continue to be vigilant in order to ensure that the nation’s plant and animal species do not fall prey to unscrupulous poachers.