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Complaint Yields Several Polluted Oysters Cases

Release Date: 11/17/2017

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) enforcement agents cited 16 subjects for alleged oyster violations on Nov. 16 in St. Bernard Parish.

Agents cited Raymond Johnston, 56, Torie Gray, 24, Robert Wells, 57, Thomas Deogracias, 37, Raymond Green, 58, Aaron Tillman, 43, Anthony Johnson, 31, Fredrick Patterson, 39, Karl Carpenter, 34, Paul Farve, 29, Roger Tomasich Jr., 44, Rodney Bass, 49, Richard Mayne, 52, Terry Bilbo Jr., 22, all from Mississippi, Robert Richards, 51, of Laplace, and Jimmy Smith, 46, of Texas, for taking oysters from a polluted area.

Agents were responding to a complaint of several boats harvesting oysters in a polluted area on the seed ground near Half Moon Island in Lake Borgne.  Agents located and documented six vessels harvesting oysters from the polluted area.  Agents seized a total of 192 sacks of oysters and returned them to the water.

Taking oysters from a polluted area brings a $900 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  The men could also face having their oyster harvester licenses revoked by LDWF for up to one year.  The violators could also be sentenced to perform 40 hours of community service and only be allowed to harvest oysters from a vessel that is equipped with a vessel monitoring device for up to one year.

Agents participating in the case are Senior Agent Joel Cromp and Corporal Mike Marquez.

Port Sulphur Man Cited for Crab Trap Theft

Release Date: 11/16/2017

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents cited a man Port Sulphur man for alleged crabbing violations on Oct. 27 in Plaquemines Parish.

Agents cited Charles K. Granger, 50, for theft of crab traps and use of crab traps without the required markings.

Agents were on patrol in Yellow Cotton Bay near Venice when they spotted a vessel around 12:30 p.m. being operated by Granger actively tending crabs traps.  As agents investigated the traps they found multiple untagged traps and several traps that did not have tags identifying Granger as the owner.

Theft of crab traps and tending crab traps without the required markings each brings a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail for each offense.

Agents participating in the case are Senior Agent William T. Bartlett and Agent Anthony Corner.

Houma Man Cited for Illegal Shrimping on Pointe-aux-Chenes WMA

Release Date: 11/14/2017

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries cited a Houma man for alleged shrimping violations on Nov. 9 in Terrebonne Parish.

Agents cited Dwayne T. Hotard, 44, for illegally taking commercial fish, taking commercial fish without a vessel license, blocking the passage of fish, over the limit of shrimp on a Wildlife Management Area (WMA) and being on a WMA after hours.

Around 5:15 p.m. on Nov. 9, agents received a complaint about a net that was stretched across a flood control structure off of Point Farm Road on the Pointe-aux-Chenes WMA.  Agents arrived on scene around 7 p.m. and found a vessel being operated by Hotard fishing a net that was propped up across the flood control structure.

Agents found Hotard in possession of 329 pounds of shrimp.  Agents seized the shrimp and sold them to the highest bidder and also seized the vessel on a department seizure order.

Shrimping on the Pointe-aux-Chenes WMA is limited to 25 pounds per boat per day during an open inside waters shrimping season.

Taking commercial fish illegally carries a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  Taking commercial fish without a vessel license and blocking the passage of fish each brings a $250 to $500 fine and up to 90 days in jail.  Being on a WMA after hours and over the limit of shrimp on a WMA each bring a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail.

Sgt. Thomas Dewitt, Corporal Dean Aucoin and Senior Agent Stephen Rhodes are participating in the case.

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