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Livingston County, MO (2013-10-07)
A Livingston County man will spend the next seven years in prison after pleading guilty to the illegal sale of wildlife.
52 year old Lester L. Hines of Avalon, Missouri pleaded guilty earlier this year to the illegal sale of wildlife with a value greater than 500 dollars. During the investigation, Hines admitted he and an associate had spotlighted and killed raccons while riding an all-terrain vehicle and they planned to sell the pelts. He also told investigators 57 pelts were sold earlier. 53 year old Billy F. Hicks, also of Avalon has been placed on probation for four years and his hunting, fishing and trapping privileges were revoked for five years. In December, a conservation agent noticed both men riding in a van in Livingston County. He knew both were convicted felons and neither man had a valid driver's license. The agent notified the Missouri Highway Patrol and a trooper stopped the van. A conservation agent searched the the van and found 125 raccoon pelts worth more than one thousand dollars. Hines told agents all the raccoons had been shot while using spotlights while riding on an ATV which is illegal under the Missouri Wildlife Code.
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