Enforcement

Louisiana Operation Game Thief, Inc. Issued $2,900 in Rewards At Meeting

Release Date: 10/06/2017

Louisiana Operation Game Thief, Inc. (LOGT), a Louisiana wildlife crime-stoppers program, awarded $2,900 to diligent citizens statewide at their quarterly meeting on Oct. 5 in Woodworth.

The LOGT board reviewed six cases that included public tips from informants.  A total of 20 subjects were apprehended and a total of 28 offenses were written in regards to the reviewed cases.

The cases reviewed and awarded money to the public for their assistance consisted of two alligator cases, a whooping crane case, a deer case, a dove baiting case and a migratory waterfowl case.

Anyone wishing to report wildlife or fisheries violations should anonymously call LDWF’s 24-hour toll free Operation Game Thief hotline at 1-800-442-2511 or utilize LDWF's tip411 program.  To use the tip411 program, tipsters can text LADWF and their tip to 847411 or download the "LADWF Tips" iPhone and Android apps.

LOGT was instituted in 1984 and provides cash rewards for information leading to the arrest of violators of fish and wildlife regulations.  Funds are raised through private donations, court directed contributions and through contributions from cooperative endeavor agreements with organizations such as the National Wild Turkey Federation and Quality Deer Management Association.

To make a donation to the LOGT that can be used for cash rewards, please contact Lt. Will Roberts at wroberts@wlf.la.gov.

Agents Make Drug and Wildlife Violations Case on Atchafalaya Delta WMA

Release Date: 09/28/2017

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents arrested one Franklin man for alleged drug and wildlife violations and cited two other Franklin subjects for alleged wildlife violations on Sept. 26 in St. Mary Parish.

Agents arrested Eric L. Peltier, 38, for possession of methamphetamine, hydrocodone, Xanax, clonazepam, marijuana, possession of a firearm while in possession of illegal drugs, intentional concealment of illegally taken wildlife, hunting deer from a boat, hunting deer during illegal hours with artificial light, hunting deer during a closed deer season, possessing a firearm while frogging at night, collecting reptiles/amphibians and fishing without a basic fishing license.

Agents also cited Leon P. Savoie, 39, and Shelly G. Lee, 38, for intentional concealment of illegally taken wildlife, hunting deer from a boat, hunting deer during illegal hours with artificial light, hunting deer during a closed deer season, possessing a firearm while frogging at night, collecting reptiles/amphibians and fishing without a basic fishing license.

Agents were on patrol on the Atchafalaya Delta Wildlife Management Area (WMA) when they stopped a vessel around 11 a.m. to perform a boating safety and creel check.  During the check, agents found Peltier in possession of methamphetamine and marijuana.  Upon completion of the investigation, agents located several other types of suspected illegal narcotics belonging to Peltier including hydrocodone, Xanax and clonazepam.

Agents also learned that the three individuals had set out to go fishing with jug lines and to catch frogs without basic fishing licenses.

Agents further learned that while frogging after dark the subjects spotted a deer and shot it from their vessel with the assistance of an artificial light.  After shooting the deer, the subjects hid the deer in the front storage compartment of the vessel.

Agents seized a doe deer, an 18 foot vessel, 35 horsepower outboard motor, a 12 gauge shotgun, the illegal narcotics and a .22 caliber pistol.  Agents booked Peltier into the St. Mary Parish Jail.

Illegal possession of hydrocodone and methamphetamine each carries up to a $5,000 fine and five years in jail for each offense.  Illegal possession of Xanax and clonazepam each brings a $1,000 to $5,000 fine and up to five years in jail for each offense.  Possession of a firearm while in possession of illegal drugs carries up to a $10,000 fine and five to 10 years of prison.  Possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia each brings up to a $500 fine and six months in jail.

Intentional concealment of illegally taken wildlife, taking deer during a closed season and hunting deer during illegal hours brings a $900 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail for each offense.  Possession of a firearm while frogging carries a $250 to $500 fine and up to 90 days in jail.  Hunting deer from a boat carries a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail.  Collecting frogs and fishing without a basic fishing license carries up to a $50 fine and 15 days in jail for each offense.

The three subjects may also face civil restitution totaling $1,624 for the illegally taken deer.

LDWF Names New Chief of Enforcement Division

Release Date: 09/26/2017

Col. Martin
LDWF Sec. Jack Montoucet Tabs Col. Martin as New Chief of Enforcement

On Sept. 21, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF), promoted Lt. Col. Sammy Martin to Colonel, which is the highest ranking position in the Enforcement Division.  Col. Martin takes over for the recently retired Col. Joseph “Joey” Broussard, who served the department for 27 years of which the last three years were as Colonel.

Col. Martin, 57, of Chauvin, has been an agent for 35 years.  Col. Martin has received numerous awards during his career including LDWF’s Outstanding Agent of the Year in 1992, three Meritorious Service Awards and the Chief’s Award in 2014.

“On Sept. 21, I selected Lt. Col. Sammy Martin to take over as head of the Enforcement Division. With more than 30 years of experience and dedication to LDWF, I am confident that Col. Martin will do a great job in enforcement’s top leadership position,” said LDWF Secretary Jack Montoucet.  “My decision was made after assessing interviews of candidates, consultation along with the direction I and Col. Martin envision for the future of the enforcement division.”

Col. Martin graduated from the Louisiana POST Training Academy in 1982.  As a field agent for 15 years he mainly patrolled Terrebonne and Lafourche parishes including Grand Isle.  In 1997 he was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant to serve as the district supervisor.  Achieving the rank of Captain in 2004, Col. Martin was tasked with managing the Region 6 Office in Thibodaux encompassing St. James, St John, Assumption, St. Martin, St. Mary, Terrebonne and Lafourche parishes including Grand Isle.

Col. Martin was promoted to the rank of Major in 2009 and assigned to LDWF headquarters overseeing four of the enforcement division’s eight regions.  In 2014 he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel and oversaw the enforcement division’s boating safety program serving as the states Boating Law Administrator, budget, search and rescue, training, emergency services, statewide strike force, maritime security, public information, quartermaster, communications and aviation sections among other duties.

“As I have risen through the ranks, I have been fortunate to perform a multitude of duties.  I have patrolled the gulf and inshore waters for commercial and recreational violations, performed search and rescue missions following hurricanes, checked hunters in the field, worked side by side with some of the best men and women in law enforcement, became a captain of a region, worked administrative positions at headquarters and now finally as colonel in charge of the entire division,” said Col. Martin.  “These experiences have given me a well-rounded perspective on what it means to be an enforcement agent and how I can effectively lead these agents as their colonel."

Des Allemands Man Found with Undersized and Over the Limit of Catfish

Release Date: 09/26/2017

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents cited a Des Allemands man for alleged recreational catfish violations on Sept. 24.

Agents cited Kerry Fonseca, 48, for taking over the limit of catfish, possessing undersized catfish and for failing to display required navigation lights.

Agents observed Fonseca actively operating his vessel within Bayou Des Allemands around 7:45 p.m.  Agents immediately conducted a boating safety inspection as Fonseca failed to display proper navigation lights.

During inspection, agents identified a large crate of blue catfish within the vessel.  Fonseca had identified himself as a recreational fisherman and stated he recently fished trotlines to take catfish home to his family.

Agents found Fonseca in possession of 120 catfish of which 62 were under the 12 inch minimum length requirement.  The recreational limit for catfish is 100 fish per person, per day. In addition, recreational fishermen may possess undersized catfish not to exceed 25 fish. Agents seized the blue catfish and donated them to a local charity.

Possessing over the limit and undersized recreational catfish each carries a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail.  Improper or no running lights carries a $50 fine and up to 15 days in jail.  Fonseca may also be ordered to pay civil restitution for the replacement value of the fish totaling up to $100.

Agents participating in the case are Cpl. Kyle Wagner and Sr. Agent Chelsea Kling.

Castor Man Arrested for Drug Violations on Loggy Bayou WMA

Release Date: 09/26/2017

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents arrested a Castor man for alleged drug violations on Sept. 24 in Bienville Parish.

Agents arrested Christopher Lee, 43, for possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute, possession of drug paraphernalia and fishing without a basic fishing license.

Agents were on patrol on the Loggy Bayou Wildlife Management Area (WMA) when they spotted Lee.  During questioning, agents found that Lee had been fishing and tried to hide his fishing pole in the woods as the agents approached him.  Agents found the fishing pole and a meth pipe next to the pole.

During the arrest, agents found three bags of methamphetamine in Lee’s pocket and also learned he did not possess a basic fishing license.  Agents seized over six grams of methamphetamine, a drug pipe and $2,141 in cash.

Possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute brings up to a $50,000 fine and two to 30 years in prison.  Possession of drug paraphernalia carries up to a $500 fine and up to six months in jail.  Failing to possess a basic fishing license brings up to a $50 fine and 15 days in jail.

Agents involved in the case are Sgt. Jared McIver and Agent Justin Greer.

Agents Cite Three Men for Possessing 189 Speckled Trout Over the Limit

Release Date: 09/26/2017

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents cited three men for alleged recreational fishing violations on Sept. 24 in Lafourche Parish.

Agents cited Alec Galliano, 30, of Galliano, Winston Hohensee, 76, of Larose, and Bo Boura, 31, of Galliano, for over the limit of speckled trout and possessing fish that weren’t kept intact while on the water.  Galliano was also cited for not possessing basic and saltwater fishing licenses.

Agents were on patrol in Tidewater Canal near Leeville when they stopped a vessel with the three men on board to perform a creel and license check.  Agents noticed a handful of ice chests in the boat and found bags full of filleted fish inside.

Agents found a total of 478 filets of speckled trout, which put the men in possession of 239 speckled trout.  Since there were only two licensed fishermen on the vessel, the men were only allowed to possess up to 50 speckled trout while on the water.  It is also a violation to possess speckled trout that are not kept intact while on the water.

Agents seized the fish and donated them to a local charity.

Failing to keep speckled trout intact while on the water brings a $100 to $350 fine and up to 90 days in jail.  Possessing 50 or more speckled trout over the limit carries a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  Failing to possess a basic and saltwater license each brings up to a $50 fine and 15 days in jail.

The men may also face civil restitution for the illegally possessed fish totaling up to $7,000.

Agents participating in the case are Lt. Joseph Arnaud and Senior Agent Richard Bean.

Off Duty Agent Observes Two Metairie Men Taking Over the Limit and Undersized Fish

Release Date: 09/19/2017

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) enforcement agents cited two Metairie men for alleged recreational fishing violations on Sept. 16 in Terrebonne Parish.

Agents cited Jorge Cabrera, 26, and Juan Ciprian, 28, for possessing over the limit of black and red drum, possessing undersized black and red drum and possessing an undersized mangrove snapper.

LDWF Lt. Joseph Arnaud was off duty fishing in the area when he observed Cabrera and Ciprian fishing from the bank near Montegut taking undersized red and black drum.  Lt. Arnaud called the on duty agents to check on the two men’s catch.

LDWF agents were able to perform a creel check on the men and found them in possession of 31 red drum of which 29 were undersized, 13 black drum of which 10 were undersized and one undersized mangrove snapper.

Agents seized all the fish and donated them to a local charity.

Red and black drum each have a daily possession limit of five per person and the minimum size limit is 16 inches and not allowed to possess more than one over 27 inches.  Mangrove snapper must be at least 12 inches long.

Taking over the limit of red drum brings a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  Possessing undersized red and black drum, possessing undersized mangrove snapper and possessing over the limit of black drum each carries a $100 to $350 fine and up to 30 days in jail for each offense.  The men also face additional criminal fines totaling $1,250 for the undersized and over the limit of red drum.

The men may also be assessed civil restitution up to $850 for the replacement value of the illegally taken fish.

Agents participating the case are Lt. Joseph Arnaud, Sgt. Bryan Marie, Senior Agent Thomas Wolf and Senior Agent Stephen Rhodes.

Chief of LDWF’s Enforcement Division Retiring

Release Date: 09/18/2017

Chief of LDWF’s Enforcement Division Retiring

After more than 27 years of service to the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division, Col. Joseph “Joey” Broussard has announced his retirement.

Broussard’s effective retirement date is Sept. 30.

“We certainly wish Col. Broussard the best on his retirement and really appreciate everything he has done for the department’s enforcement division,” said LDWF Secretart Jack Montoucet. “His leadership during our recent search and rescue operations in Texas and southwest Louisiana after Hurricane Harvey was textbook perfect and a shining example of what he has meant to this department.”

Broussard started his LDWF career in 1990 as a cadet in the second class that graduated from the LDWF Training Academy.  After graduating from the academy in 1991, Broussard worked as a field officer until 1996 making the rank of sergeant in 1994.

Broussard was transferred to LDWF Enforcement Headquarters in Baton Rouge in 1996 and put in charge of training, quartermaster and the freshwater mussel program while making the rank of lieutenant.

In 2000, Broussard was promoted to captain and given the additional duties of being in charge of the special operations.  A few years later he was promoted to major and put in charge of the coastal enforcement regions.  Broussard was then promoted to lieutenant colonel in 2011 overseeing the patrol aspects of the agents in the field.

When Col. Jeff Mayne retired in May of 2014, Col. Broussard was promoted to be the Chief of the LDWF Law Enforcement Division.

“I’m very happy to have served with a lot of great agents throughout my career and am proud of the job I’ve done to serve the people in this state,” said Col. Broussard.  “It has been a great career that I will always cherish, but now it is time to move on to the next phase of my life.”

LDWF will name a replacement for Col. Broussard soon.

LDWF Agents Deploy to Florida to Assist with Hurricane Irma Aftermath

Release Date: 09/11/2017

LDWF Agents Deploy to Florida to Assist with Hurricane Irma Aftermath
LDWF Agents Deploy to Florida to Assist with Hurricane Irma Aftermath

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries deployed agents and assets to Florida to assist with search and rescue and security during the aftermath of Hurricane Irma.

LDWF sent 55 agents with 53 trucks, 50 vessels, a mobile command center and three support trailers to the Pensacola area yesterday, Sept. 10.  Upon arrival to Pensacola on Sept. 10, agents were then sworn in by Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Law Enforcement Division.

Agents will be staged in the Pensacola area until the storm moves north and it is safe to travel into the southern portions of the state.  LDWF Agents will be working in coordination with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Law Enforcement Division and the Mississippi Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks Law Enforcement Division during the duration of the aftermath.

Agents will remain in Florida until no longer needed.

Operation Game Thief Complaint Yields Polluted Oyster Violations Case

Release Date: 09/05/2017

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) enforcement agents cited four subjects for alleged oyster violations on Sept. 4 in Lafourche Parish.

Agents cited Micky J. Picou, 35, Rusty J. Authement, 29, both from Montegut; and Steve Leboeuf, 57, and Wiley J. Lebouef, 66, both from Chauvin; for taking oysters from a polluted area.

Agents were responding to an Operation Game Thief complaint of illegal oyster harvesters in polluted waters east of Tidewater Canal.

Agents located the subjects in the morning harvesting oysters from a polluted area.  Agents seized 13 sacks of oysters and returned them to the water.  Agents also seized the vessel and dredges on a department seizure order.

Taking oysters from a polluted area brings a $900 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  The men could also have their oyster harvester licenses revoked by the department for up to one year.  The violators could also be sentenced to perform 40 hours of community service and only be allowed to harvest oysters from a vessel with a vessel monitoring device for up to one year.

Agents participating in the case are Lt. Joseph Arnaud and Senior Agent Richard Bean.

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