Brookville man pleads guilty after migratory birds hunted illegally
January 27, 2012
DAYTON — A Brookville guide pleaded guilty in U.S. Southern
District Court of Ohio on Wednesday for violating the Lacey Act by
selling migratory birds that were hunted illegally.
Haffner, 46, owner of Face to Face Outdoors Guide Service, faces a
maximum penalty of one year in prison and a $100,000 fine, according
to the Department of Justice and the United States Attorney for the
Southern District of Ohio Carter M. Stewart.
sentencing date before United States Magistrate Judge Michael R.
Merz has not yet been determined.
In his plea agreement,
Haffner admitted that he guided Canada goose hunts in Montgomery
County on January 21-22, 2010. During those hunts, Haffner directed
and encouraged the hunters to take over their daily bag limit of
geese. Haffner also admitted in his plea that he guided Mourning
dove hunts in Brookville on September 1-2, 2010. During those hunts,
Haffner encouraged hunters to shoot over their bag limits of doves.
The Migratory Bird Treaty Act prohibits any person from taking
more than the daily bag limit, or aggregate daily bag limit, of
migratory birds. Canada geese and Mourning doves are both migratory
The Lacey Act makes it a crime for a person to
transport or sell wildlife when that person knew, or should have
known in the exercise of due care, that the wildlife was taken or
possessed in violation of federal law. Under the Lacey Act, the term
“sale” includes the sale of guiding services for the illegal taking
of wildlife. “By selling guiding services for taking over the limit
of migratory birds, Haffner was selling those birds within the
definition of the Lacey Act,” said Fred Alverson, law enforcement
coordinator for the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
As part of the
plea agreement, Haffner has agreed to serve 18-months probation,
with the first six months being served as home detention. Haffner
will perform community outreach services by speaking at hunter
education courses about the migratory bird The case was investigated
by the United States Fish & Wildlife Service and the Ohio Department
of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife.
As part of the
plea agreement, the covered trailer, hunting decoys, bird calls, and
shotgun that were used in furtherance of the Lacey Act crime have
been abandoned and forfeited.
Haffner graduated from
Northmont High School in 1983, won the state sporting clay
championship in 1999 and the Middletown Sportsmen’s Club title in
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