Fishermen have ‘crappie’ day, fined $10K for illegal harvest

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Two Tennessee men had a “crappie” day recently after being fined over $10,000 for catching an illegal number of fish in north Mississippi.

According to court documents, Jian Wu Huang, 50, and Qui M Huang, 44, caught 171 crappie while fishing at Enid Lake. With state law saying a fisherman can only catch 15 crappies per day, the 140 additional fish cost the two men a total of $10,550.

Officials also said the Huangs were using oversized hooks and in excess of the maximum number of hooks allowed per line. U.S. Magistrate Judge David A. Sanders issued the fine amount on Monday.

“We are committed to working collaboratively with the MDWFP to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats,” federal wildlife officer Stephen Clark said. “The illegal take and interstate transport of a state trust 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.”

In addition to the fine, each defendant was placed on probation for a period of one year, during which time each man will be prohibited from fishing anywhere in the world and banned from all Corps of Engineers property in the Northern District of Mississippi.

“We appreciate the collaborative investigative efforts of the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and prosecution of this case by the U.S. Attorney’s Office,” MDWFP Colonel Jerry Carter added. “We will continue to work with our federal partners to conserve and protect Mississippi’s natural resources by utilizing all investigative tools available to ensure that those who choose to violate the laws of this state are investigated and prosecuted accordingly.”

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