Poachers fined $10K as Quebec Ministry moves to break up network of illegal sale of bear parts
SAINTE-ANNE-DES-MONTS, QUE-A GaspÈ resident, DÈsirÈ Cloutier, was recently convicted of illegal possession of animals destined for the fur trade, as well as of buying and selling black bear gall bladders. He was fined $10,600 and his hunting permit was revoked for a period of two years. Officers from Quebec's Ministry of Natural Resources, Wildlife and Parks also confiscated several bear parts and a number of documents, including a $1,000 postal money order. Eight other individuals from the area also pleaded guilty to poaching offences. The convictions formed part of an initiative, under way by the Ministry since November 2002, to dismantle a network of illegal sale of black bear gall bladders and large game meat. Nearly 200 agents from the Ministry have been collaborating with officials from the federal Canadian Wildlife Service to break up the vast poaching network, which has spread into all regions of Quebec.