Volume 6, Number 30 - October 19, 2006
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Truck drivers charged
Deputy Sublette County Attorney Meredith Peterson confirmed in an interview that on Monday, complaints were filed against 10 truck drivers involved in the alleged illegal import of cattle into Sublette County last spring.
All 10 truckers involved in the import of 920 heifers from Utah were charged, and all were from out of state, Peterson said.
According to information from Wyoming Livestock Board investigator Kim Clark, in late May, a Utah cattle broker allegedly arranged the import of 16 loads of cattle into the county without import permits or health certificates. When the cattle were brand inspected in central Utah, the destination point on that inspection was reported as “Woodruff, Utah,” according to Clark, which allowed the cattle through the Evanston port of entry. But instead of going to Woodruff, the cattle were delivered to Sublette County. The cattle were brought into Sublette County without being spayed or receiving calf-hood vaccinations for brucellosis, a violation of animal health rules in Wyoming.
The investigation into what charges should be brought forth in the scheme revealed that as WLB regulations currently stand, there is not appropriate language to prosecute someone acting as a broker in illegally importing cattle into Wyoming. Under current regulations, only the truck drivers can be charged, not the person who conspired to have the illegal import occur. The WLB is currently in the process of making rule changes to correct the deficiency.
The charges against the truckers are all misdemeanors and center around two allegations: the import of animals into the state without the required certificate of veterinary health, and the import of animals without the required import permit.
Each driver was charged with two counts for each day they participated in shipping the cattle into Sublette County. Four truckers were charged with two counts each and six truckers were charged with a total of four counts each.
Peterson said all the truckers would now be served with summons that they will need to appear in court in Sublette County for arraignment.
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