Two North Battleford area men pled guilty to five charges under The Wildlife Act and The Outfitter and Guide Regulations for illegal outfitting and export of wildlife and were fined a total of $24,500 in provincial court in North Battleford.
Charles and Neal Meechance of Cando were each convicted of the charges. Charles received a total fine of $21,000 for three of the charges, and in addition, also received a five-year hunting licence prohibition. Neal received a total fine of $3,500 for the other two charges and also received a two-year hunting licence prohibition.
The charges were laid as the result of a two year investigation by the Ministry of Environment. Conservation officers determined that Charles Meechance was acting as an outfitter without a provincial Outfitters' Licence and that Neal Meechance was unlawfully guiding American hunters for him. They were also exporting trophy moose and white-tail deer antlers without an export licence.
"Illegal hunting and outfitting robs the people of Saskatchewan of the benefits of our natural resources and the provincial government will take whatever action is necessary to ensure those who abuse the resources are prosecuted," Environment Compliance and Enforcement Director Ken Aube said. "We are pleased that the courts have agreed and imposed this significant penalty. I am confident that it will send the message that Saskatchewan's fish and wildlife resource is valued and will be protected."
Anyone who is aware of, or who suspects wildlife, fisheries or environmental violations, is encouraged to report them to the nearest Ministry of Environment office or to call the province's toll-free Turn In Poachers (TIP) line at 1-800-667-7561 or #5555 from a SaskTel Mobility cell phone. Callers may be eligible for rewards through the SASKTIP Reward Program.