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Tennessee Attorney Pleads Guilty to Illegally Killing Trophy Whitetail Deer in Illinois

February 4, 2008

Allen W. Blevins - Tennessee PoacherAllen W. Blevins, 41, of Knoxville, Tenn., pleaded guilty today in federal court to illegally killing and transporting white-tailed deer, a misdemeanor violation of the Lacey Act, a federal wildlife protection law. Blevins admitted to illegally killing three deer while he was employed as a guide at Hadley Creek Outfitters, a business located in Pike County, Illinois, and agreed to forfeiture of three illegally-taken deer head mounts.

The plea was accepted by U.S. Magistrate Judge Byron Cudmore who then ordered Blevins to pay a $7,500 fine and forfeit the mounts of the illegally killed deer. The fine will be used to fund continuing state and federal investigations of wildlife law violations.

In October 2004, Blevins used a bow and arrow to kill a trophy 10-point white-tailed deer in Pike County, Ill. Blevins then illegally transported the deer to Tennessee where he lied to officials and falsified documents to make it appear he had killed the deer in Tennessee. Blevins then returned to Illinois and illegally killed and transported two more deer, including another trophy 10-point buck during the month of November 2004

Allen W. Blevins - Illinois Poached DeerBlevins, an attorney and founding partner of Blevins, Kizer and Gammeltoft, P.C., of Knoxville, Tenn., was employed as a guide for Hadley Creek Outfitters at the time he illegally killed and transported the deer. Photos of the trophy deer illegally killed by Blevins were posted on Hadley Creek Outfitters website for promotional uses. The mounts of these illegally killed deer were also displayed in public to promote other Blevins’ business ventures. In addition to being an attorney and hunting guide, Blevins is also listed as the President of Whitetail Investment Properties, an investment group that uses filmed deer hunts to sell real estate on numerous outdoor and hunting television shows.

Blevins’ guilty plea is the result of an investigation into illegal hunting conducted by special agents and investigators of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency.

“The willingness of the U.S. Attorney’s Office to prosecute cases such as this one helps us protect our nation’s natural resources,” said U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Special Agent Tim Santel. “If all self-professed hunters acted with blatant disregard for wildlife laws as Blevins did, there would be no trophy animals left to hunt.”

The Central District of Illinois’ U.S. Attorney’s Office, represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Gregory M. Gilmore, negotiated the plea agreement.

The interstate transportation of wildlife-- including hides or parts--obtained in violation of state law violates the Lacey Act. The Lacey Act is a federal wildlife protection law and each violation carried a possible maximum fine of $100,000 and/or one year in prison.



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