Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents cited three men on May 22 for alleged shrimping violations near Calcasieu Pass in Cameron Parish.
Larry Boudoin, 42, of Lake Charles, Phillip Whittington, 30, of Cameron and Joe Wilson, 43, of Cameron were cited for shrimping with "butterfly nets" during a closed season.
Agents observed the vessels "butterflying" in state shrimp Zone 3 inshore waters, which are closed to the commercial harvest of shrimp until noon on May 28.
Agents seized four butterfly nets that are being held as evidence and 80 pounds of shrimp that were donated to the Salvation Army in Lake Charles.
Wilson was also cited for failing to possess a commercial license, taking or possessing commercial fish without a vessel license, taking commercial fish without a commercial gear license, obstruction of justice and unauthorized use of a vessel. The unauthorized use of a vessel charge came after the owner of the vessel that Wilson used filed a written statement with enforcement agents that claimed his shrimp boat was used without his knowledge.
The penalty for butterflying during a closed season is a fine between $400-$950, or jail time up to 120 days, or both plus court costs. For a second offense the fine is between $750-$999, and imprisonment for 90 to 180 days plus court costs.
Failure to have a commercial license, take or possess commercial fish without a vessel license and take commercial fish without a commercial gear license each carry fines ranging from $250-$500, or jail time up to 90 days, or both plus court costs.
The penalty for obstruction of justice is a fine up to $10,000, imprisonment up to five years with or without hard labor, or both.
The penalty for unauthorized use of a vessel is a fine not more than $5,000 or imprisonment with or without hard labor for up to 5 years, or both.
Wilson was booked into the Cameron Parish jail and is awaiting bond.
Agents participating in the cases were Sgt. David Sanford, Sr. Agent Ray Thomas, Agent Chris Hoag and Agent Beau Robertson.
For more information, contact Lt. Col. Keith LaCaze at 225-765-2988 or firstname.lastname@example.org.