Michigan Man Fined For Polar Bear Mount

Ontario/Nunavut News, Bear Hunting Magazine

A 73 year-old hunter from Michigan will not be going to prison, but was fined $2,000 and given one year probation for sneaking a mounted polar bear, which he shot near Foxe Basin, north of Hudson Bay in Canada on November 6, 2000, into the United States. The mount had been stored at a friends house in Calgary for seven years until 2007 when the man, his son and grandchild drove into Canada while hauling a boat. Then the man placed the mount on the boat and brought it into the U.S. while the son drove the vehicle back into the United States.

The man was sentenced in federal court for knowingly and unlawfully using a U.S. port or harbor to import polar bear parts without obtaining an import permit, a misdemeanor. The man legally hunted the bear and area residents used the meat from it. But, it is illegal to import the hide and other parts from a polar bear into the United States.

The U.S. Attorney handling the case stated, "...this case is not about any alleged beef between between the U.S. and Canada nor is it about hunting. What the case is about is that there are laws passed by Congress … that say you can't do something, and he knew what that something was. …he knew it was illegal to bring it into the United States, he just didn't like that law.”

After the hearing, it was stated that the polar bear mount may be used for educational or law-enforcement purposes, but nothing had yet been finalized.

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