Listed below are two concluded court cases from the officer's notebook. If you would like to read all the wildlife and fisheries investigations and the final outcome of the court cases be sure to pickup your Alberta Game Warden magazine at your favorite bookstore. Or better yet, purchase a yearly subscription so you won't miss an issue.
  • Fines and jail for killer of deer and boy's dog: Coronation District
  • Backyard poaching brings charges: Evansburg District
  • Kill then count, wrong order: Elbow District
  • Astute hunters helps catch deer poacher: Barrhead District
  • Packing heat in a park brings charges: Jasper National Park
  • Search warrant uncovers over-limit of fish: Fort McMurray District
  • Man fined for using stepdaughter's licence: Red Earth Creek District
  • Moose killers land in court: Swan Hills District
  • Offenders pay $1.5 million for environmental violations
  • Who's Who?: Camrose District
  • No guide for the guilty: Red Earth Creek District
  • Illegal hunting and abuse of treaty rights: Swan Hills District
  • Should have passed the buck: Camrose District
  • Tag it immediately: Lac La Biche District
  • Case closed on fish traffickers: Lac La Biche District

Should have passed the buck: Camrose District

Two young Bashaw men should have passed the buck when they decided to poach a mule deer.

On Nov. 26, 2001, Camrose conservation officers received an anonymous call detailing the illegal hunting activity of Derick Trautman of Bashaw. The anonymous caller described circumstances surrounding an incident in which Trautman shot and killed a mule deer buck. Further investigation revealed that Trautman did not have a valid 2001 hunting licence.

Officers obtained a search warrant that was executed at Trautman's residence on Nov. 29, 2001, by conservation officers and Bashaw RCMP.

Upon arriving at the residence, officers discovered a 30-30 calibre rifle and ammunition on the seat of Trautman's truck, which would later be forfeited to the Crown. Trautman was located in the residence. Officers seized five firearms that were found in various locations in the residence. Officers also discovered a plastic bag on the deck containing meat. Trautman admitted that the meat belonged to the mule deer in question. The head and cape were found in a shed on the property and the rest of the carcass was found in a field behind the shed.

In a statement provided to officers, Trautman admitted that Richard Weatherill accompanied him on Nov. 21 when he shot and killed the mule deer in an area west of Bashaw. Weatherill is a BC resident currently working in Alberta, and did not possess an Alberta hunting licence.

Derick Trautman, 19, and Richard Weatherill, 18, appeared in Stettler provincial court on Jan. 24, 2002, and plead guilty to hunting without a licence, and to illegal possession of a mule deer. Judge H.D. Gaede ordered the men to pay total fines of $2,300 and forfeited Trautman's 30-30 rifle. The five other firearms were ordered returned, once the owners obtained firearms licences. 

Case closed on fish traffickers: Lac La Biche District

A January trial brought to a close a case of illegal trafficking in whitefish on Beaver Lake last year, in which more than $18,000 in fines were assessed.

On Jan. 14, Judge D.E. Demetrick heard a trial involving the illegal purchase of nearly 100 whitefish that had been caught in Indian domestic nets set on Beaver Lake.

Judge Demetrick heard that on Jan. 19, 2001, Lac La Biche conservation officers conducted a patrol on Beaver Lake. Three Indian domestic nets were located on Beaver Lake near the Spruce Point boat launch. The nets were identified to be lawfully set, under licence, by Leo Mountain, Irvin Gladue and Myrna Moses. Surveillance indicated that the three nets were pulled and reset into the lake at 6:55 p.m.

On Jan. 20, 2001, another patrol was conducted on Beaver Lake and this time officers observed Mountain, Gladue and Moses pulling and resetting their nets, catching 45 whitefish. The officers noted that the three people were driving a green 1998 GMC 4X4 truck.

Officers observed the suspect vehicle as it left Beaver Lake and stopped at Mountain's residence on the Beaver Lake Indian Reserve for a short period of time. After departing the residence, the subjects went into Lac La Biche where they fueled up and headed out of town northbound on Highway 881. The suspect vehicle then turned west on Secondary Highway 858 and then north into the yard of Anfim Egoroff. The suspect vehicle was then observed backing up to the Quonset at the residence where the occupants unloaded whitefish from the box of the truck. After making the stop at the Egoroff residence, the suspect vehicle returned to Lac La Biche.

At approximately 6:10 p.m., Egoroff and his wife drove into the yard of their residence. A warned statement was taken at this time, and officers obtained authority to search the quonset. A total of 99 whitefish were recovered from three large freezers located behind the building in the yard. Egoroff confirmed in a warned statement that he had purchased the 99 whitefish from the suspects in the green GMC truck for the sum of $150 cash that afternoon. The whitefish were subsequently seized and Egoroff was charged for unlawfully buying fish.

After considering all of the circumstances of the case, Judge Demetrick convicted Egoroff of the charge and ordered him to pay a fine of $1,500.

The cases of the three other individuals involved; Leo Mountain, 31, Irvin Gladue, 28, and Myrna Moses, 32, were decided a year ago on April 30, 2001. The charge against Moses was eventually withdrawn, but the other two received significant penalties that totaled $17,000. Each was ordered to pay $8,500 in fines.

We invite wildlife and fisheries enforcement officers from all jurisdictions to submit current and significant cases for inclusion in the Game Warden's Notebook segment of the publication. All details must be accurate public record. Please send the details and photographs of case files to:


THE ALBERTA GAME WARDEN

Jason Hanson
5201 - 50 Avenue
Wetaskiwin, Alberta, Canada T9A 0S7