FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 31, 2002
A covert investigation, conducted by Special Agents of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Wildlife Officers of the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks, exposed the violations. The prosecution of the case was handled by the Office of the United States' Attorney for the Northern District of Mississippi. On July 23, 2002, Hess was fined $5,000 and placed on three years probation. On July 26, Chuck and Robert Aldison were each fined $3,500 and placed on two years probation. Hess and the Aldisons are prohibited from hunting, guiding, or outfitting any where in the world for their term of probation.
"This conviction should send a clear message to other guides and outfitters that if they aid and abet hunters with violating federal laws, they will be held accountable," said Robert Oliveri, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Resident Agent in Charge in Jackson, Mississippi.
According to Oliveri, the investigation revealed flagrant violations of killing more than the daily bag limit of federally protected migratory game birds. During 1997-2000, a hunter was allowed to take fifteen doves as the daily bag limit; however, Hess killed more than 60 doves during a morning and an afternoon hunt in September 2000. Hess also killed as many as 25 ducks during one hunt. Hess and the Aldisons often took two limits of ducks a day during this time period, a tactic to avoid apprehension often described as "double-tripping."
"We worked very closely, as we have for many years, with the
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to protect our State's wildlife resources,"
said Lieutenant-Colonel John Collins of the Mississippi Department of
Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks. "It was a well-executed investigation,
and the penalties were justified."
Please visit the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Southeast Region website at
NOTE: You can view our releases or subscribe to receive them -- via e-mail -- at the Service's Southeast Regional home page at http://southeast.fws.gov. Our national home page is at: http://news.fws.gov/newsreleases/.
Atlanta, GA 30345
Phone: 404/679-7289 Fax: 404/679-7286