General

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Gross Littering Case Leads to Outstanding Warrants and Drug Arrests

Release Date: 05/07/2018

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents arrested a man and woman for alleged drug violations on May 5 in Lafayette Parish.

Agents arrested Sean N. Covington, 43, of Rayne, for possession of schedule II narcotics, possession of schedule IV narcotics, gross littering, a traffic bench warrant for expired plate and driving under suspension, a misdemeanor bench warrant for theft, and a felony bench warrant for theft over $750 to under $5000.  Agents also arrested Amanda D. Bergeron, 31, of Rayne, for a felony fugitive warrant of theft over $750 to under $5000.

Agents were notified about a littering site.  While investigating the litter pile, agents found information that linked Covington as the suspected dumper.

Agents were able to perform a traffic stop on Covington and it was confirmed that Covington had three warrants for his arrest in Lafayette Parish.  While conducting a pat down of Covington, the agents found a bottle of pills containing 37 Lortabs and 36 Xanex.

Upon running the information on Bergeron, who was a passenger in the vehicle, agents learned that Bergeron was a fugitive from Lafayette Parish and had an active warrant for her arrest.

Illegal possession of a schedule II and schedule IV drug each brings one to five years in jail and up to a $5,000 fine for each offense.  Gross littering carries up to a $900 fine and 16 hours of community service to be served in a litter abatement program.

Agents booked Covington and Bergeron into the Lafayette Parish Jail.

Two Men Arrested for Oyster Theft in St. Bernard Parish

Release Date: 05/07/2018

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents cited two men for alleged commercial fishing violations on May 4 in St. Bernard Parish.

Agents arrested Prince G. Taylor, 61, of Kentwood, and Ameal Wilson, 64, of Magnolia, Miss., for unlawfully taking oysters off a private lease and failure to have written permission.

Agents were on patrol in Lake Coquille when they observed Taylor in a vessel actively dredging for oysters in an area not leased to him around 10:30 a.m.  Agents seized 14 sacks of oysters and returned them to the water.  Agents also placed a forfeiture order for Taylor's vessel and two dredges.  Agents then booked the men into the St. Bernard Parish Jail.

Unlawfully taking oysters off a private lease and failing to have written permission both carry up to a $950 fine and 120 days in jail for each offense.

The men could also face having their oyster harvester licenses revoked by LDWF 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 that is equipped with a vessel monitoring device for up to one year.

Body of Baton Rouge Man Recovered from Gulf of Mexico

Release Date: 05/05/2018

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents found the deceased body of a missing boater in Plaquemines Parish this morning, May 5.

LDWF agents along with the Plaquemines Parish Sheriff’s Office and LDWF Wildlife Division staff found the body of Donald Tabb, 85, of Baton Rouge, around 10:30 a.m. near the Southwest Pass over 10 miles from where he was reported missing.

Tabb had been missing since May 2 when he was a part of a fatal boating incident near South Pass.  Tabb, John Frey, 86, of Magnolia, Texas, and a survivor from Baton Rouge were on a 27-foot vessel when they capsized around 7 a.m. on May 2 about a half mile from South Pass in the Gulf of Mexico.

The survivor was able to retrieve Frey and get him to shore where he was unresponsive and pronounced dead by a medical examiner on the scene.  Tabb went under the water and never resurfaced.

Frey and Tabb’s bodies were turned over the Plaquemines Parish Coroner’s Office to determine an official cause of death.

LDWF will be the lead investigative agency for this boating incident.  None of the men were wearing a personal flotation device at the time of the incident.  It is unknown at this time what caused the vessel to capsize.

Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Opens Online Portal for Civil Restitution Payments

Release Date: 05/04/2018

BATON ROUGE, La.--The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) has expanded its method of collecting payments for civil restitution associated with violations. Violators can now pay their civil restitution online from anywhere at any time using major credit cards.

An online portal, developed in partnership with Louisiana Interactive, is now available for the convenience of those that need to pay civil restitution. The new technology will allow LDWF to collect civil restitution payments in a more efficient manner.

LDWF is committed to both, ensuring the state receives all restitution owed, and that the public has innovative and user-friendly tools to fulfill their monetary obligations.

In cases that involve civil restitution, LDWF will inform violators by mail of their responsibility to pay the civil restitution for the replacement value of the illegally taken wildlife, fish or damaged habitat.

The new secure portal is available here and can be accessed on any device. A link to this portal will also be available on LDWF’s homepage, www.wlf.la.gov.

“Louisianans are known for their love of our Sportsman’s Paradise,” said Secretary Jack Montoucet. “We are providing this convenient digital service to collect restitution that helps us maintain Louisiana’s wildlife for future generations.”

Capsized Boat Near South Pass Leads to Fatality and Missing Boater

Release Date: 05/02/2018

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents are searching for a missing boater following a fatal boating incident in Plaquemines Parish.

LDWF agents along with the Plaquemines Parish Sheriff’s Office and U.S. Coast Guard responded to a capsized vessel this morning, May 2, in the Gulf of Mexico about half of a mile from South Pass.

According to the survivor, he and two other men were on a 27-foot vessel around 7 a.m. when it capsized ejecting all three men into the water.  The 60-year-old survivor from Baton Rouge was able to retrieve one of the men and get him to shore.

The man that the survivor retrieved was unresponsive once on shore and pronounced dead by a medical examiner on the scene.  The deceased was 86 years old from Magnolia, Texas.  His body was turned over to the Plaquemines Parish Coroner’s Office to determine an official cause of death.

The search and rescue crews are searching for the other missing boater in the area of the capsized vessel.  The missing boater is 85 years old from Baton Rouge.

LDWF will be the lead investigative agency for this boating incident.  None of the men were wearing a personal flotation device at the time of the incident.  It is unknown at this time what caused the vessel to capsize.

Texas Man Cited for Crabbing Violations

Release Date: 05/01/2018

Louisiana Department of Wildlife And Fisheries Enforcement Division cited a Texas man for alleged crabbing violations on April 27.

LDWF agents cited Thanh Van Nguyen, of Bridge City, Texas, for taking female crabs during a closed season and violating interstate commerce regulations.

LDWF agents along with Texas Parks and Wildlife agents are working jointly to detect Texas commercial fishermen coming into Louisiana waters and catching female crabs and then selling them in Texas.

There is currently a closure on the taking of female crabs in Louisiana waters for the commercial fishermen during the months of March and April.  There is no closure for the take of female crabs in Texas waters.  Agents also learned that Nguyen does not possess the required licenses for crabs in Texas because of past violations.

LDWF agents observed Nguyen running crab traps in Louisiana waters and then notified TPW agents about Nguyen trying to sell his catch at a seafood dock just off the Sabine River in Texas.

LDWF agents seized two crab crates containing 224 female crabs and returned the crabs to the water.

Violating interstate commerce regulations carries a $900 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  Taking female crabs during a closed brings a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail.

Body of Missing Boater Recovered from the Tickfaw River

Release Date: 04/30/2018

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement agents, Livingston Parish Sheriff’s Office deputies and Livingston Parish Fire Department personnel found the deceased body of a missing boater on the Tickfaw River today, April 30.

The body of Daniel Jones, 42, of Holden, was recovered around 11:30 a.m. this morning on the Tickfaw River in Livingston Parish.

According to a female survivor, Jones was operating a 15-foot bateau with a surface drive motor near the Leisure Landing south of Springfield around 4 p.m. on April 29.  They were coming out of a turn in the river when they were both suddenly ejected into the water.  The female was able to swim to shore and Jones never resurfaced.  Neither occupant was wearing a personal flotation device.

Authorities were notified and arrived on scene and searched for Jones until late last night on April 29.  Authorities then started the search again at daybreak this morning.

Jones’ body was found near where he was reported missing and his body was turned over to the Livingston Parish Coroner’s Office.

LDWF will be the lead investigative agency for this fatal boating incident.  It is unknown at this time what caused this fatal boating incident.

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