Athabasca Hunters Plead Not Guilty to Charges

Friday, January 23, 2004 at 14:04



Six northern Saskatchewan hunters charged with hundreds of wildlife violations in the Northwest Territories entered “not guilty” pleas yesterday.


The hunters hail from Fond du Lac and Black Lake.


They face 385 charges for offences that allegedly took place in the fall and winter of 2002.


The hunters’ lawyer, Bruce Slusar, says the number of charges they’re facing is still too high, and hopes he and the Crown can agree to chop that number down.


The list of charges includes using caribou meat fit for human consumption to bait wolves.


Slusar says their argument to support the “not guilty” pleas is based mainly on the Aboriginal rights of the Dene north of 60.


Slusar says he and his clients welcome the opportunity to clarify the extent of Dene rights.


A date for their trial still has to be determined.