Jian Wu Huang, 50, and Qiu M Huang, 44, recently pled guilty to one count each of taking over their daily limit of 15 crappies apiece while fishing the Enid Lake Spillway west of Tupelo, Mississippi. The two men from Lakeland, Tennessee, were apprehended with 171 crappies, or 141 fish over their combined limit, on Jan. 1.
An Oct. 30 press release from the federal U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Mississippi details the violation. In addition to possessing nearly five times their legal daily limit of crappies, the two men also were also caught using oversized hooks and exceeding the number of hooks allowed per fishing line. (From Dec. 1 until the end of February, that limit is one rod per angler with no more than two single hooks sized #2 or smaller.)
The violations will be costly for the two anglers. U.S. Magistrate Judge David A. Sanders ordered each defendant to pay $1,000 in fines and an additional $4,275 in restitution to the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks. The defendants were also placed on probation for one year. During this time, they are reportedly prohibited from fishing anywhere in the world, although it's unclear how the U.S. Attorney's Office plans to enforce such a ban. They are also banned from all properties owned by the Army Corps. of Engineers in the Northern District of Mississippi.
Read Next: Nebraska Wardens Apprehend Two Groups of Panfish Poachers, Seize 265 Crappies and Bluegills as Evidence
Officers from MDWFP and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service joined forces to arrest and prosecute the two poachers.
“We are committed to working with the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks, to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats,” USFWS law enforcement agent Stephen Clark said in the press release. “The illegal take and interstate transport of a species is a violation of federal law and will be investigated and prosecuted. We will continue to work closely with our state partners to conduct these criminal investigations.”