Dillon couple sentenced for being leaders of major poaching ring
Illegally harvested game mounts displayed
DILLON -- A Dillon couple has lost their hunting, fishing, and trapping privileges for being the leaders of what Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks wardens call a major poaching ring.
Charles "Bill" Foster and his wife Sally were sentenced Thursday in one of the biggest fish and wildlife cases in southwest Montana in recent years.
Judge Loren Tucker sentenced Charles Foster to six months of house arrest and a 10-year suspended sentence with the state Department of Corrections.
He also lost all hunting, fishing, and trapping privileges for life. In addition, he cannot accompany anyone hunting, fishing, or trapping for 10 years.
Sally Foster was given a five-year suspended sentence, lost her hunting, fishing, and trapping privileges for 10 years, and cannot accompany anyone hunting, fishing, or trapping for five years.
FWP investigators conducted a three-year investigation and discovered over 30 illegally taken deer and elk, as well as 65 fish over the legal possession limit. They also found the Fosters allowed non-resident family members to hunt in Montana using their tags.
"It is a good day for the people who enjoy Montana's fish and wildlife resources, knowing that the Fosters were held accountable for the violations they committed over a ten-year period," says lead FWP Investigator Chad Murphy.
In all, 17 people were sentenced in connection with the poaching ring and paid more than $33,000 in fines.
Wardens said the Fosters were, "the last and most egregious violators among the 17 co-defendants."