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Sunday, November 18, 2018



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Operation Game Thief rewards citizens / catches bad guys

Operation Game Thief rewards citizens / catches bad guys

“You’ve got to know when to say ‘when’”, said Don Dubuc on his Saturday morning WWL radio show -- Don Dubuc the Outdoors Guy.

He was commenting on a Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries news release about a Galliano man who was cited for catching and keeping more than 20 black drum and 1 redfish, all undersized, in the Pointe-Aux-Chenes Wildlife Management Area on Jan. 31st.

Every Saturday, Don does a segment on his radio show called “Bad Boys of the Outdoors” in which he features one or more outdoorsmen who have been caught breaking game or fish laws.

Saturday, Dubuc featured Rufino Gonzalez-Ibarra, 34, who was cited for possessing 26 black drum and 1 redfish, all under the 16-inch minimum size limit. The legal possession limit for drum and redfish is 5 per person per day.

For his offenses, Ibarra was charged by agents with several possession offenses.

Ibarra’s particular offenses bring a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail for each time the law was broken.
Dubuc also mentioned a program called Louisiana Operation Game Thief, Inc. (LOGT), a Wildlife and Fisheries initiative which rewards citizens who help the agency successfully prosecute game and fish thieves in Louisiana.

In 2014, LOGT awarded $16,200 to diligent citizens who helped LWF prosecute 17 deer cases, 10 migratory game bird cases, six turkey cases, three fish cases and two alligator cases.

According to a LWF news release, the LOGT board reviewed a total of 40 cases in 2014 of which 67 subjects were apprehended and a total of 218 offenses written in regards to the reviewed cases.

LOGT has awarded $358,900 since its inception in 1984.

If anyone wants to get involved in reporting violations, LWF offers several ways for citizens to participate in LOGT. Individuals can anonymously call LWF’s 24-hour toll free Operation Game Thief hotline at1-800-442-2511.

Tipsters can also use the tip411 program, texting LWF and their tip to 847411.

The "LADWF Tips" iPhone and Android apps can be downloaded to one’s phone from the iTunes or Google Play store free of charge.

Texting or downloading the app enables the public to send anonymous tips to LWF and lets LWF respond back, creating a two-way anonymous chat.

Users of the app or texters can also send in photos to help support their claim and be used as evidence. CitizenObserver, the tip411 provider, uses technology that removes all identifying information before LDWF receives the text so that LDWF cannot identify the sender.

LWF says that the LOGT program isfunded through private donations, court directed contributions and through contributions from cooperative endeavor agreements with organizations such as the National Wild Turkey Federation and Quality Deer Management Association.

Citizens can also support LOGT by making donations. To do so, contact Lt. Will Roberts atwroberts@wlf.la.gov.

(Thanks to Don Dubuc and Lt. Will Roberts for providing information for this article.)