Tuesday, February 28, 2012

how to get busted

so far this year, a lot of people have been arrested for illegal oyster harvesting. the nrp seems to be on it: read the following from their police blotter...

February 13, 2012  
Police Blotter 

Illegal oystering charges and using false identity

On February 10, the Maryland Natural Resources Police (NRP) arrested Robert J. Benton, Jr., 44, of Stevensville, on conservation and criminal charges after he was caught illegally harvesting oysters and then tried to avoid the charges by using another waterman's identity. 

On February 3, Benton was stopped while he was illegally diving for oysters in the Little Choptank River. When asked for ID, Benton gave NRP Officers a tidal fish license in another waterman's name, representing himself as that person. 
Benton was charged with fraud, fraud to avoid prosecution, fraud to avoid payment greater than $500 and theft. Benton was also charged with taking oysters without a commercial license, failure to pay oyster surcharge and taking oyster for commercial purposes by diving in an area reserved for hand tongs. Benton faces penalties that range from $250 to $25,000 and 15 years in prison.  Benton was jailed in the Dorchester County Detention Center on $10,000 bond. 

Five charged with oyster violations

On February 10 at 7 a.m., NRP Officers charged five individuals with harvesting oysters in the Tangier Sound Oyster Sanctuary. NRP officers were aboard a Maryland State Police helicopter when they noticed three commercial fishing boats illegally dredging for oysters in the sanctuary. 
Officers charged the following individuals with unlawfully harvesting oysters in an oyster sanctuary: 
    1. Steven P. Benton, 43, from Deale Island, and Darin K. Ford, 46, from Princess Anne, aboard the Donna Lee. 
    2. Andrew A. Benton, 37, and Ulyses Seawright Jr., 33, both from Wenona, aboard the Gentle Breeze. 
    3. David T. Wheatley Sr., 47, from Wenona aboard the Just Faith. 
NRP Officers seized Wheatley's oyster dredge from his boat. This was the second time this season that Wheatley was apprehended in the oyster sanctuary. His previous violation occurred on January 20. 

St. Marys River violations

On February 9 at 3 p.m., NRP charged three individuals with removing oysters from an oyster sanctuary and possessing undersized oysters in the St. Marys River near Great Mills. 

Officers charged Migdael A. Trujillo, 32, Lorenzo A. Regalado, 32, and Jose M. Vaquers, 42, all from Dameron, Md.  A trial date of May 18, 2012 has been set for the District Court of Maryland for St. Mary's County. 

February 3, 2012 
Police Blotter 

NRP charges five with oyster violations

The Maryland Natural Resources Police (NRP) on Friday, February 3, charged five watermen with oyster violations in Dorchester County. 
At around 9 a.m., NRP officers observed Bryan R. Grimes, 36, of Chester, Edward E. Grimes, 61, of Stevensville, Mason T. Coursey, 19, of Centerville, and Christopher L. Marvel, 19, of Grasonville, illegally diving for oysters in a hand tong only area of the Little Choptank River. 
The men were charged with catching oysters for commercial purposes by diving in an area reserved for hand -tonging.  Officers seized four bushels of oysters and returned them to water. 
At 9:30 a.m., NRP officers observed Nelson B. Goslin Jr., 42, of Cambridge, illegally power dredging for oysters in Fishing Bay. He also had undersized oysters (14 percent) on his boat. NRP charged Goslin Jr. with possessing unculled and undersized oysters and power-dredging in an area reserved for hand tongs. Three bushels of oysters were seized and returned to the water. 
A trial is set for April 18 in the District Court of Maryland for Dorchester County. 

January 23, 2012 
Police Blotter 

Five charged with oyster poaching

The Maryland Natural Resources Police (NRP) charged five watermen, on three boats, with power-dredging for oysters in the Tangier Sound Oyster Sanctuary. 
On January 20, at 7:30 a.m., an NRP officer aboard a Maryland State Police helicopter saw eight commercial boats power-dredging for oysters within the sanctuary. The officer was able to identify and plot locations of three of the boats before they scattered among the other commercial vessels working outside the sanctuary. 
NRP charged the following individuals with oystering in an oyster sanctuary; 
 John Earhart III, 32, and Jason Abbott, 30, both of Princess Anne, aboard Miss Terry. 
 David Wheatley, 47, of Deale Island, and Stephen Webster, 58, of Wenona, aboard Just Faith. 
 Daniel Benton, 49, of Deale Island, aboard Chantilly Lace.