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TPWD Game Warden Field Notes
The following are excerpts from recent Texas Parks and Wildlife Department law enforcement reports.
Great Catch — Recently, Harris County Game Wardens caught a shrimp boat captain with an illegal by-catch reduction device in his net. All together, 1,781 pounds of shrimp were confiscated and sold. Cases are pending.
All’s Well that Ends Well — Game Wardens received some welcome news from the Milam County Judge’s office. A suspect on whom the wardens had filed deceptive business practices and theft charges for the illegal activities involved in his hunting lease operation pleaded guilty to the charges and accepted a plea agreement. This agreement amounted to more than $1,000 in fines, two years of probated jail time, an agreement to not engage in the hunting lease business for 18 months, 200 hours of community service, and $5,290 in restitution to the hunters. This was the culmination of more than a year’s worth of effort by the wardens. This effort serves to protect hunters from fraudulent outfitters in Milam County.
To Make Matters Worse — Aransas County Game Wardens responded to a commercial Gulf shrimp boat operating in federal waters with Turtle Excluder Devices that were sewn shut. The game wardens assisted with the count and unloading of approximately 16,000 pounds of shrimp and 150 pounds of red snapper fillets. They also assisted with the transport and booking of the captain (who was arrested) and one deck hand who was charged with assaulting a federal officer.
Teamwork — On opening day in Hardeman County, game wardens apprehended three hunters who were 130 doves over the limit. A little later that evening, they caught six more hunters who had 78 doves too many. Earlier in the evening, one of the game wardens had found four hunters with 40 doves over the limit in Wilbarger County. The rest of the weekend they found three more hunters double-bagging and a game warden also caught two men hunting on a baited field.
Hefty Fines — Game Wardens worked a baited area during the opening day of dove season in Red River County. Thirty people were filed on for hunting over a baited area and fined $150 each. They had killed 151 birds before 7 a.m. The owner of the property who placed the bait and leased the property is facing charges in federal court in Texarkana. Possible fine for the birds will exceed $4,800.
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