MNR News Release
A group of hunters from the Sturgeon Falls area have been fined a total of $5,800 for offences under the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act and the Public Lands Act.
Eric Robert Danis, Marc F. Danis, Robert Danis, J.M. Claude Lachapelle, and Marcel Luc Lachapelle, all of Crystal Falls; and Patrick Alain Martel, Joey Jason Danis, and Sean Denis Danis, all of Cache Bay, pleaded guilty and were each fined $200 for having a loaded firearm on an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) and an additional $500 for trespassing for the purpose of hunting. Justin Fernand Danis of Cache Bay was fined $200 for travelling on a closed road.
Court heard that during the opening weekend of the moose season in October 2012, a conservation officer and a member of the Ontario Provincial Police’s Snowmobile, ATV, and Vessel Enforcement (SAVE) team were investigating complaints about a bridge that had been built across the Sturgeon River north of River Valley. The complainant indicated that hunters were using the makeshift bridge to illegally access a remote area that is closed to motorized vehicle travel.
The officers encountered a large group of hunters which included the defendants, and discovered that in addition to travelling by ATV on the closed road, most of the hunters were in possession of loaded firearms on their ATVs and almost all were not wearing helmets. Charges were laid against the drivers of the ATVs, while several other members of the party, many of whom were youth, were issued numerous warnings for similar violations.
Justice of the Peace Michel Moreau heard the cases in the Ontario Court of Justice, Sturgeon Falls, on January 21, 2013.
The public is reminded that the laws regarding the possession of loaded firearms and wearing helmets on ATVs are in place to ensure public safety.
To report a natural resources violation, call 1-877-TIPS-MNR (847-7667) toll-free any time or contact your local MNR district office during regular business hours. You can also call Crime stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).