January 14, 2020
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2 Vermont hunters face $6k in fines for crossing lake border

Toby Talbot | AP
Toby Talbot | AP
In this June 25, 2008 file photo, a floating marker indicates the border between the U.S. and Canada in the Missisquoi Bay basin on Lake Champlain in Vermont. Two Vermont waterfowl hunters are facing up to $6,000 in federal and state fines for returning to the United States from Canada in Missisquoi Bay on Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, without reporting to border authorities after they crossed into Canada to go hunting.

MONTPELIER, Vt. — Two Vermont waterfowl hunters are facing up to $6,000 in federal and state fines for returning to the United States from Canada without reporting to border authorities on Lake Champlain’s Missisquoi Bay after they had been hunting on the Quebec side of the border.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection say the men were spotted Sunday by two Franklin County sheriffs’ deputies who were patrolling the Vermont side of the lake near the Canadian border.

The deputies escorted the two men, who had three shotguns and a number of waterfowl, to the Swanton Border Patrol dock where they were interviewed by federal agents. The men, whose names were not released, were issued $5,000 civil penalties for illegal transportation of waterfowl across a border. The hunters’ firearms and the birds they took in Canada were also seized.

Vermont Fish and Wildlife said the men had been staying at an Alburgh campground, were legally licensed and had their firearms registered to hunt in Canada for the Canadian waterfowl season. They crossed into Canada without first registering with U.S. authorities.

After finishing their hunt in Canada, they packed their equipment and crossed the border back into the United States without contacting border authorities or registering the birds they took in Canada as required by law.

In addition to the federal civil fine, they are facing $1,000 state fines.

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