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CHEROKEE COUNTY MAN GUILTY OF NEGLIGENT OF TRANSPORTATION OF WILDLIFE IN EAST TEXAS
TYLER, Texas – A 32-year-old Cherokee County, Texas man has pleaded guilty to federal wildlife violations in the Eastern District of Texas, announced U.S. Attorney John M. Bales today.
Blake Powell pleaded guilty on Dec. 12, 2011, to a three-count Information charging him with negligent of transportation of wildlife before U.S. Magistrate Judge Judith K. Guthrie.
According to information presented in court, Powell owned and operated Rockin' P White Tails, a high-fence deer breeding facility in Cherokee County, Texas. On three separate occasions, Powell transported and possessed illegally imported live whitetail deer valued at over $350.00. On Feb. 17, 2007, Powell sold a live whitetail deer, known as Diablo, valued at over $350.00 that was acquired from an out-of-state source, which is prohibited by Texas law. On Mar. 4, 2007, Powell sold 10 live whitetail deer, valued at over $350.00, and on Nov. 22, 2007, Powell acquired through interstate commerce from an out-of-state source, a live whitetail deer, known as Thunderstruck, valued at over $350.00. The fair market value of the illegally imported whitetail deer, including relevant conduct, exceeded approximately $208,500.00. Additionally, through the unlawful importation of whitetail deer, Powell accumulated whitetail deer semen valued at approximately $85,000.00 and progeny valued at approximately $172,500.00.
Powell faces up to one year in federal prison at sentencing. Powell has agreed to pay a fine of $243,000.00 and restitution to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Foundation of $157,000.00. A sentencing date has not been set.
This case was investigated by the Special Operations Unit of the Texas Parks and Wildlife and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jim Noble.