October 17, 2011
Wyoming Family Faces Millions in Fines, Jail Time for Letting Out-of-State Hunters Use Landowner Tags
By Chad Love
A Wyoming family could face jail time and millions in fines for allowing out-of-state hunters to illegally take dozens of game animals on their property using landowner tags.
From this story in the Billings Gazette:
Several members of a ranching family near Ten Sleep could face decades of jail time and millions in fines for allegedly allowing out-of-state hunters to tag wildlife with their Wyoming landowner hunting permits, according to a federal indictment. Richard “R.C.” Carter, owner of Big Horn Adventure Outfitters, allegedly took more than a dozen hunters out on his family’s property from 2003 to 2009 to kill elk, deer and antelope. Richard Carter Sr. and Mark Carter — R.C.’s father and younger brother respectively — allegedly used their own tags on the animals shot and falsely claimed in affidavits that they killed them.
R.C. and Mark Carter then helped to transport the animals back to the hunters’ homes in other states in violation of federal law, the indictment alleges. R.C. Carter charged between $3,000 and $7,500 per hunter and/or per hunt for his services, not including tips, according to the indictment. However, the indictment states that Carter occasionally bartered or exchanged guided hunts for advertising, client referrals and guided fishing trips.
The Carters procured so many landowner tags, the indictment states, because in 2004 they subdivided their property into eight 160-acre parcels, so that they and members of their family could receive a landowner elk and antelope license for each parcel. If convicted, R.C. and Mark Carter each could face up to 55 years in prison as well as fines of up to $2,750,000. Richard Carter Sr. could receive up to five years in prison, as well as a $250,000 fine.