DENVER (KDVR) — A multi-year fraud investigation by Colorado Parks and Wildlife officers has lead to a plea deal with a Georgia man.
CPW said Douglas R. Crookston, 41, paid more than $41,700 for for fraudulently obtaining licenses and illegal possession of wildlife.
Crookston was charged with 42 misdemeanors for wildlife violations, including the illegal possession of six big game animals. Crookston pleaded guilty to ten counts of making a false statement in the purchase of a hunting license, three counts of hunting without a valid license and two counts of illegal possession – one trophy mule deer and one trophy bull elk – on April 28 in Adams County Court, according to CPW.
Crookston was sentenced to two years of supervised probation and a court-ordered suspension of all hunting, fishing and trapping related activities.
CPW said Crookston’s conviction makes him eligible for suspension of all hunting, fishing and trapping privileges in Colorado and the other 48 states in the Interstate Wildlife Violator Compact for up to five years. The possible suspension will be determined by CPW’s suspension hearing examiner at a later date.
“While license fraud cases are not the typical ‘poacher’ case, CPW takes these cases very seriously,” said Wildlife Officer Scott Murdoch, who worked the case. “Colorado residents are entitled to certain privileges that out of state residents are not. This comes in the form of license prices, license draw odds and license allocations. When non-residents claim Colorado residency fraudulently, all wildlife taken become illegal. They are essentially stealing money from CPW and opportunity from lawful residents that may have been able to acquire the fraudulently obtained license.”
If you believe someone is poaching, you can report it by calling 1-877-265-6648 or you can send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.