Listed below are only two concluded court cases from the "online" 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.

  • Outfitter and guide convicted for illegal possession of deer - Smokey Lake District
  • Back to Jail - Athabasca District
  • Poachers caught at Camp Wainwright - Vermillion District
  • Moose shot in frustration yields over $3000 in fines - Smokey Lake District
  • Undercover operations result in charges
  • Contractor fined for killing fish - Delta, British Columbia
  • Negligent trapper fined - Bonnyville District
  • Scissors sewer fish poachers- Barrhead District

Report-A-Poacher Dial 1-800-642-3800

Moose shot in frustration yields over $3,000 in fines – Smoky Lake District

A couple from Bellis received an expensive education about receiving meat from an illegally harvested animal, and the poacher was hauled into court as well.

In January, Smoky Lake Conservation Officers received information that Kurt and Lillian Stahl of Bellis, were in illegal possession of moose meat. A licence check revealed that neither person possessed a valid moose licence for the previous season.

In March, Kurt Stahl told officers he had received the moose meat from Ray Bourgeois of Wildwood. Officers discovered that Bourgeois did not possess a valid moose licence for the previous season either. Under warrant, the Stahl residence was searched and the moose meat was seized. Kurt Stahl, 39, and Lillian Stahl, 40, both gave statements in which they admitted not knowing whether or not Ray Bourgeois actually possessed a licence to hunt moose, but they stated that Bourgeois’ wife was a Treaty Indian. Ray and Sophia Bourgeois were subsequently interviewed and it was determined that Sophia was in the process of applying for Treaty status, but had not yet received status. Ray Bourgeois, 42, then admitted to shooting the moose on his own property because he was frustrated that he could not obtain a special moose licence for his area. Officers seized the remaining moose meat that was still in possession of the Bourgeois’.

On Apr. 17, Ray Bourgeois appeared in Evansburg provincial court where he plead guilty to one count of hunting without a licence. Judge D.G. Rae ordered Bourgeois to pay a fine of $1,500.

On May 3, Kurt and Lillian Stahl each plead guilty in Fort Saskatchewan provincial court to one count of illegal possession of wildlife. Before accepting the guilty pleas of the husband and wife, Judge P. Ayotte advised them that because wildlife cases are difficult to detect, the fines are generally high and used to deter other potential violators. In attempt to better legitimize his possession of the meat, Kurt Stahl commented to the judge that the meat was received from a native.

Judge Ayotte explained that natives can only hunt for their own use and cannot legally give meat away, so that was not a defence. The Stahls were fined a total of $1,724 (including surcharges).

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:

c/o Jason Hanson
211 Provincial Building
Camrose, Alberta, Canada T4V 1P6