A 71-year-old Hardin man has acknowledged killing bald and golden
eagles and selling their parts.
The Billings Gazette
(http://bit.ly/yzeQjD) reports William Esley Hugs pleaded guilty
Thursday in U.S. District Court to one count of conspiracy to
traffic in eagles and migratory birds. A plea agreement calls for
five other charges to be dismissed when he is sentenced on May 17.
Hugs and at least five others, including his son and his
brother, were charged last summer after a tip led to a U.S. Fish and
Wildlife Service investigation.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Mark
Steger Smith says FWS worked with an informant to buy eagle
feathers, bird parts and whole eagle carcasses from Hugs from about
December 2010 until February 2011.
Bald and golden eagles
are protected by federal law.
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