Hunting guide fined over $20,000

The Granisle hunting guide is was found guilty and is facing fines for a Mexican client who shot a grizzly outside of the guide area.

The Granisle hunting guide was fined after a Mexican client shot a grizzly outside of the guide area.

Granisle Hunting Guide Outfitter Stewart Berg is facing a total of $20,425 fine for hunting violations.

Sentenced in Smithers court January 6, Berg was found guilty for guiding a client to shoot a grizzly in the wrong management area in the fall of 2011.

“He received a number of letters from the Wildlife Branch saying his quota had changed, indicating that he was no longer able to harvest grizzly bears in a particular management unit,” said Kevin Nixon, Conservation Sergeant for the Bulkley-Stikine Zone.

“For whatever reason, he continued to hunt there and had a client harvest a grizzly bear in an area where he was told he could not harvest a grizzly bear anymore.”

The grizzly was shot by a Mexican client on the east side of Babine Lake, part of region seven near the border to region six, said Sgt. Nixon.

Berg was sentenced guilty for three violations by the Honourable Judge Christine Birnie.

With two years to pay, Berg was fined $15,000 for the grizzly shot outside his management area, as well as $2,000 for incomplete guide declarations and $2,000 for late guide submissions.

A release from Conservation Services says the sentence takes into account the typical revenue collected by guide outfitters with international clients, which ranges between $10,000 and $15,000 for harvesting a grizzly in B.C.

The courts directed Berg to pay half of his $19,000 fine to the Grizzly Bear Trust Fund.

He also pays $1,425 to the courts as a 15-percent victims surcharge.

Sgt. Nixon says they considered a sanction on Berg’s business, but decided not to pursue that.

“This is his first offence and first conviction,” said Sgt. Nixon.

“We’re not looking to put him out of business, we’re looking for him to correct his ways.”

Anyone who sees a fish, wildlife or pollution violation, can report it at the Conservation hotline at 1-877-952-7277.


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