In 2008, one or more game wardens working for the Montana
Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks (FWP) conducted what they
describe as a "sting" operation to catch some poachers
theoretically intending to poach a record ram in the Missouri
Breaks of north-central Montana.
The warden involved as an "undercover" agent was the person who
actually shot the ram, and three other non-FWP individuals
accompanying the warden were charged with a plethora of fish and
All of the individuals charged have been acquitted in jury
trials, or charges have been dismissed by prosecutors.
Read the latest news story about this in the Billings Gazette (HERE).
Since all prosecutions over this incident are reported to be at
an end, I wrote a letter to FWP Director Joe Maurier asking a
series of possibly-embarrassing questions about the operation,
such as did the warden have a license for the ram he killed, if
not, why wasn't the warden also prosecuted, what state crimes
are wardens exempt from for prosecution, and more. You can
read my letter to Director Maurier (HERE).
The chief attorney for FWP has responded with a predictably lame
letter saying they really can't comment on this because they're
not certain they're done prosecuting all of those involved
(despite three acquittals and a dismissal). You may read
FWP's response (HERE
- .pdf file).
Clearly, there are some issues involved that need to be
explored, especially including what crimes FWP personnel are
excused for committing, crimes for which FWP would prosecute any
of the rest of us unmercifully.