Enforcement

Three Mississippi Men Cited for Oyster Violations in St. Bernard Parish

Release Date: 05/09/2019

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents cited three Mississippi men for alleged oyster violations on May 9 in St. Bernard Parish.

Agents cited Delton H Wells, 60, of Liberty, Miss., Raymond A. Johnston, 57, of Summit, Miss., and Gasper S. Penton, 50, of Bay St. Louis, Miss., for failing to have working Vessel Monitoring Systems (VMS) while using an out of state landing permit.

Agents were on patrol when they found three vessels actively dredging for oysters with two of them in Karako Bay and the other in Fishing Smack Bay.  Agents made contact with the subjects on board the vessels and found they were from Mississippi and were dredging for oysters in Louisiana using an out of state landing permit without working VMS systems.

Regulations state that you must have a properly working VMS system while using an out of state landing permit to fish for oysters.

Agents seized a total of 407 mini sacks of oysters from the three vessels and returned them to the water.

Failing to have a working VMS with an out of state landing permit brings a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.

113 Boaters Certified During "Boating Education Lagniappe Day"

Release Date: 04/30/2019

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) certified 113 boaters statewide after their ninth annual "Boating Education Lagniappe Day" on April 27.

Boating Education Lagniappe Day was at eight locations across the state and consisted of the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) boating education course, food and drinks, giveaways and door prizes all free of charge to the public.

The NASBLA safe boating certification is mandatory for anybody born after Jan. 1, 1984 who wants to operate a motorboat in excess of 10 horsepower.

The NASBLA approved course includes information on choosing a boat, classification, hulls, motors, legal requirements and equipment requirements.  The course also covers many navigation rules and charts, trailering, sailboats, canoeing, personal watercraft and more.  Each student received that completed the course was issued a vessel operators certification card.

To register for a future boating education class please visit www.wlf.louisiana.gov/boating/courses and follow the links to register.

Below was the list of class locations for lagniappe day:

Webster Parish
LDWF Region 1 Office
9961 Hwy. 80
Minden, LA 71055
Sponsors include Coca-Cola of Minden, Red River Waterway Commission, Bass Pro Shop of Bossier City, and the Webster Parish Sheriff’s Office.

Ouachita Parish
Academy Sports and Outdoors
111 Constitution Dr.
West Monroe, LA 71292
Sponsors include Academy Sports and Outdoors and Johnny’s Pizza House.

Rapides Parish
Woodworth Education Center
661 Robinson Bridge Rd.
Woodworth, LA 71485
Sponsors include the Louisiana Wildlife Agent’s Association (LWAA)

Lafayette Parish
LDWF Lafayette Office
200 Dulles Rd.
Lafayette, LA 70506
Sponsors include Deano’s Pizza of Lafayette

Beauregard Parish
Beauregard Parish Sheriff’s Office Training Center
412 Boliver Bishop Dr.
Deridder, LA 70634
Sponsors include Beauregard Chapter of Whitetails Unlimited and Beauregard Parish Sheriff’s Office

Lafourche Parish
St. John Volunteer Fire Department
2072 St. Mary St.
Thibodaux, LA 70301
Sponsors include Renovations Hardware of Galliano and LWAA

Tangipahoa Parish
Manchac Fire Department
30221 Hwy. 51
Akers, LA 70421
Sponsors include the Manchac Fire Department

St. Tammany Parish
St. Tammany Parish Recreation District #7
67835 Hwy. 41
Pearl River, LA 70452
Sponsors include the St. Tammany Parish Recreations District #7

Patterson Man Sentenced for Crabbing Violations

Release Date: 04/30/2019

A Patterson man pleaded guilty to crabbing violations in the 16th Judicial District in St. Mary Parish.

John McCloy Jr., 73, pleaded guilty to destroy legal crab traps or removing contents, failing to complete trip ticket information and selling to consumers without a fresh products license.

The Honorable Suzanne de Mahey sentenced McCloy on April 24 to pay $900 in fines and suspended his commercial fishing license for two years.

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement division agents cited McCloy Jr. for theft of crabs, selling to consumers without a fresh products license, and failing to complete trip ticket information on Aug. 29, 2018, in St. Mary Parish.

Agents Cite Two Men for Oyster Violations in Sister Lake

Release Date: 04/29/2019

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents cited two men for alleged oyster violations in Terrebonne Parish on April 25.

Agents cited Larenzo Lara Aguilar, 35, of Houma, and Miguel Rojas, 46, of San Leon, Texas, for taking oysters during a closed season on the Sister Lake Public Oyster Seed Reservation, harvesting oysters during illegal hours, and using an illegal dredge.  Aguilar was also cited for violating logbook requirements and improper running lights.

Agents were on patrol in the Sister Lake Public Oyster Seed Reservation around 5:45 a.m. when they observed a vessel with no running lights actively dredging for oysters.

Agents stopped the vessel and found Aguilar and Rojas on board with 20 sacks of oysters.  Agents seized the oysters and returned them to the seed reservation.  Agents also seized the vessel and two dredges on a department seizure order.

The Sister Lake Public Oyster Seed Reservation is closed for the entire 2018-19 oyster season.

Taking oysters during a closed season brings a $900 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  Taking oysters during illegal hours carries a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  Using an illegal dredge carries a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail.  Operating a vessel at night without running lights brings up to a $50 fine and 15 days in jail.  Violating logbook requirements brings up to a $25 fine.

Agents Cite Four Subjects for Shrimping Violations in Lake Pelto

Release Date: 04/25/2019

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents cited four subjects for alleged shrimping violations on April 21 in Terrebonne Parish.

Agents cited Dwayne Trosclair, 50, of Larose, Ernest J. Dion Jr., 33, of Dulac, Larry A. Dion, 58, of Dulac, and Kendy L. Chauvin, 38, of Houma, for using skimmer nets during a closed season.  Trosclair was also cited for improper boat numbers.

Agents received a tip that a boat was using skimmer nets to actively shrimp an area in Lake Pelto that is currently closed to shrimping.  Agents setup surveillance and observed a vessel captained by Trosclair using skimmer nets to actively shrimp in this area.

Agents seized the vessel and skimmer nets on a department seizure order and returned 30 pounds of shrimp back to the water.

Using skimmers during a closed shrimp season carries up to a $950 fine and 120 days in jail.  In addition for the first conviction of shrimping during the closed season, the court may revoke or suspend the violator's trawl, skimmer, or butterfly gear licenses for one year from the date of the conviction.  During such revocation or suspension, the violator may be present on a vessel harvesting or possessing shrimp or possessing a trawl, skimmer, or butterfly net only if the vessel is equipped with and employs an operating vessel monitoring system, which is accessible to LDWF.  The violator may also have to perform 40 hours of community service.
Operating a vessel with improper boat numbers brings up to a $50 fine and 15 days in jail.

Eunice Man Arrested for Crawfish Theft

Release Date: 04/25/2019

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) enforcement agents along with Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office (EPSO) deputies arrested a man for alleged theft of crawfish on April 22.

LDWF agents and EPSO deputies arrested Kenneth J. Douget Jr., 25, of Eunice, for theft of crawfish from a farmer and booked him into the Evangeline Parish Jail.

An LDWF agent received a complaint from a crawfish farmer that an unknown suspect stole 16 sacks of crawfish out of the back of his truck in the Mamou area.

Agents then received a call from a local crawfish dealer that the suspect was at his plant attempting to sell the stolen 16 sacks of crawfish.

An LDWF agent along with the EPSO responded to the crawfish dealer and made contact with the suspect.  During the interview, Douget Jr. admitted to stealing the 16 sacks of crawfish valued at $1,071.

Theft of crawfish in the amount of $1,000 to $5,000 brings up to five years in jail and $3,000 in fines.

Agents seized the 16 sacks of crawfish and returned them to the crawfish farmer.

Plaquemines Parish Man Arrested for Commercial Fishing Violations and Flight from Officer

Release Date: 04/23/2019

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents arrested a Port Sulphur man for alleged commercial fishing violations and flight from an officer on April 15 in Plaquemines Parish.

Agents arrested James A. Phillips, 66, for taking oysters from a polluted area, taking oysters from unleased state water bottoms, intentional concealment of wildlife, reckless operation of a vessel, and flight from an officer.

An agent was on patrol on April 4 in Grand Bayou when he observed a vessel actively dredging for oysters in a closed polluted area on unleased state water bottoms.  The agent attempted to stop the vessel, but Phillips quickly pulled up his dredges and led the agent on a vessel pursuit through the marsh.

While in pursuit of Phillips, the agent observed other men on board dumping oysters into the water.  The agent chased the vessel into Sicola Canal #2 where Phillips and the other three occupants abandoned the vessel and ran down the levee.

The agent found white oyster tags with Phillips’ harvester ID on the vessel indicating the oysters were going to hit the market intended for raw consumption.  The GPS coordinates of where these oysters were harvested were inside the polluted area that was closed by the Department of Health and Hospitals.

LDWF agents obtained an arrest warrant on April 15 and set up an arrangement for Phillips to turn himself into authorities.  Phillips was subsequently booked into the Plaquemines Parish Jail.

Taking oysters from a polluted area, taking oysters from unleased state water bottoms and intentional concealment of wildlife each carries up to a $950 fine and 120 days in jail for each offense.  Reckless operation of a vessel brings up to a $200 fine and 90 days in jail.  Flight from an officer carries up to a $500 fine and six months in jail.

Phillips also faces having his oyster harvester license revoked and not be present on a vessel harvesting or processing oysters for up to three years if convicted.  He can also be sentenced to perform no less than 90 hours of community service.

The investigation is still ongoing to apprehend the three other occupants that accompanied Phillips on the vessel.

Three Men Arrested for Oyster Violations in St. Bernard Parish

Release Date: 04/15/2019

A Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Agent along with St. Bernard Deputies arrested three men for alleged commercial fishing violations on April 9 in St. Bernard Parish.

An LDWF agent, with assistance from the St. Bernard Parish Sheriff's Office, arrested Raymond Nehlig Jr ,35, of Violet, Kenneth Marrero, 42, of St. Bernard, and Brandon Perez, 32, of Meraux, for unlawfully taking oysters off a private lease and failing to have written permission.  Nehlig Jr was also cited for operating a vessel while under license suspension and taking commercial fish without a commercial gear license.  Perez was also cited for resisting an officer and flight from an officer.

An LDWF agent was on patrol south of the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet channel when he observed a vessel actively dredging for oysters in Lake Coquille around 1 p.m. on April 9.  The agent made contact with the subjects on the vessel and determined they were dredging on a lease without permission.

As the agent was following the vessel back for arrest and booking purposes, Perez  jumped from the vessel and swam towards the marsh near Hopedale Bayou.  The agent with St. Bernard Parish deputies were able to apprehend Perez.

All three men were booked into the St. Bernard Parish Jail.

Unlawfully taking oysters off a private lease and failing to have written permission both carry up to a $950 fine and 120 days in jail for each offense.  Failing to have a gear license brings up to a $500 and 90 days in jail.  Operating under license suspension carries up to a $950 fine and 120 days in jail.  Resisting an officer and flight from an officer each carries up to a $500 fine and six months in jail for each offense.

The men could also face having their oyster harvester license revoked by LDWF for up to one year. Violators can be sentenced to perform 40 hours of community service and only harvest oysters from a vessel equipped with a vessel monitoring device for up to one year.

Terrebonne Parish Man Cited for Oyster Violations in Sister Lake

Release Date: 04/15/2019

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents cited a Houma man for alleged oyster fishing violations on April 15 in Terrebonne Parish.

Agents cited Jonah Dehart, 39, for oyster fishing without a commercial fishing license, taking commercial fish without a gear license, taking oysters without an oyster harvester license, violating log book requirements, operating a vessel with improper running lights, taking oysters during a closed season on the Sister Lake Public Oyster Seed Reservation, harvesting oysters during illegal hours and using an illegal dredge.

Agents were patrolling the Sister Lake Seed Reservation when they observed Dehart activing dredging for oysters with no running lights around 4:15 a.m. on April 15.  Agents stopped the vessel and found Dehart in possession of five sacks of freshly taken oysters.

Agents also found that Dehart was fishing for oysters without the proper licenses and with an illegal dredge.

The Sister Lake Public Oyster Seed Reservation is closed for the entire 2018-19 oyster season.

The agents seized the dredge and returned the oysters to the seed ground.  Agents also seized the vessel on a department seizure order.

Taking oysters during a closed season brings a $900 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  Taking oysters during illegal hours and without an oyster harvester license each carries a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail for each offense.  Not possessing a commercial fishing license and a commercial gear license each brings a $250 to $500 fine and up to 90 days in jail for each offense.  Using an illegal dredge carries a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail.  Operating a vessel at night without running lights brings up to a $50 fine and 15 days in jail.

18 Subjects Cited for Turkey Hunting Violations During Opening Weekend

Release Date: 04/09/2019

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement agents cited 18 people for alleged turkey hunting violations during the opening weekend of the 2019 turkey hunting season.  Turkey season opened on April 6 in all three turkey hunting areas.

On April 6 agents cited:

Whitney C. Green, 33, of Benton, for hunting turkey over a baited area, contributing to the delinquency of a juvenile and failing to comply with turkey tagging regulations in Bossier Parish.

Henry Robin Jr., 55, of Homer, for hunting turkey over a baited area in Claiborne Parish.

Jacob White, 24, of Minden, for failing to comply with turkey tagging regulations in Webster Parish.

Karson Randle, 19, of Minden, for taking over the limit of turkey and failing to comply with turkey tagging regulations in Webster Parish.

Billy J. Bass, 72, of Jonesville, for hunting turkey over a baited area in Catahoula Parish.

Harry M. Herman, 65, of Harrisonburg, for hunting turkey over a baited area in Catahoula Parish.

Cecil D. Gorman, 54, of West Monroe, for hunting turkey over a baited area in Ouachita Parish.

Thomas J. Freeman, 44, of West Monroe, for hunting turkey over a baited area in Caldwell Parish.

Trevor J. Freeman, 17, of West Monroe, for hunting turkey over a baited area and hunting turkey without a turkey hunting license in Caldwell Parish.

Jerry J. Poche, 70, of Ama, for hunting turkey over a baited area in St. Helena Parish.

Michael A. Buccola, of Ponchatoula, for hunting turkey over a baited area in St. Helena Parish.

Ryan Lemonte, 34, of Slaughter, for hunting turkey over a baited area and hunting with an unplugged gun in West Feliciana Parish.

John Keyes, 72, of St. Joseph, for hunting turkey over a baited area in West Feliciana Parish.

Charles J. Fairchild Jr., 68, of Gonzales, for hunting turkey over a baited area in West Feliciana Parish.

Dwight D. Busby, 61 of Lake Charles, for hunting turkey over a baited area in Beauregard Parish.

On April 7 agents cited:

Richard Hurst, 54, of Clinton, for hunting turkey over a baited area in East Feliciana Parish.

Richard Hurst Jr., 17, of Clinton, for hunting turkey over a baited area in East Feliciana Parish.

Garland Meredith, 69, of Eros, hunting turkey over a baited area in Caldwell Parish.

According to the 2019 Turkey Regulations, no person shall hunt or take turkeys by the aid of baiting or on or over a baited area.  Hunters are not allowed to place, expose, deposit or scatter corn, wheat or other grain, salt or other feed to lure turkeys to their hunting area.

Also, turkey hunters are required to possess Louisiana basic hunting and big game licenses, Louisiana wild turkey license and turkey tags.

Hunting turkeys over a baited area, hunting with an unplugged gun and taking over the limit of turkeys each brings a $250 to $500 fine and up to 90 days in jail for each offense.  Failing to comply with turkey tagging regulations carries a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail.  Not possessing a basic hunting license, big game license and wild turkey license each brings up to a $50 fine and 15 days in jail.

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