Illegal Bear Hunting and TraffickingSubmitted: 02/01/2013
Illegal Bear Hunting and Trafficking
Story By Ryan Michaels

OCONTO COUNTY - In 2009, four men illegally killed a black bear in Wisconsin. They were arrested, but because they sold the bear over state lines, the case went to federal court.

That's why it took four years for United States Attorney James L. Santelle to find them guilty.

John Kellogg, Christopher Halfmann, Mark Barlament, and Michael Renken of Merrill, guided undercover officers on a bear hunt. They illegally killed and tagged a bear. Kellogg then sold the meat and a rug made from the hide to another undercover officer in a different state.

"They were dealing with illegal bear guiding in the northern part of the state and in other states as well and then they were illegally trafficking those bears across state lines. But this case, closing this case and seeing these folks sentenced really is a win for ethical hunters everywhere," Says Tina Shaw, Public Affairs Specialist with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Kellogg was sentenced to 6 months in jail plus 10-thousand dollars in fines for his felony charge.

The other men received probation and smaller fines for misdemeanor charges.

Their hunting, trapping, and fishing privileges have been temporarily revoked.

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