An Indigenous hunter, who was recently found not guilty of unlawfully hunting a moose, says he is ready to fight the matter in the Supreme Court.
In April, the provincial appeals court upheld a 2015 not guilty decision for Kristjan Pierone from Manitoba.
Pierone was charged after hunting a moose on private land near Swift Current. He pleaded not guilty, claiming he was exercising his treaty right to hunt on private land.
He was initially found not guilty and a provincial appeals judge upheld that decision in April.
The FSIN applauded the provincial court’s decision to affirm Pierone’s not guilty stance.
“Our inherent treaty rights supersede provincial and federal law,” Cameron told MBC days after the appeals court decision. “That was our message from day one.”
Now the FSIN, Pierone and his lawyer are expecting the matter to be taken to the Supreme Court of Canada. While the matter has not yet been officially filed to the Supreme Court, Pierone says he is ready.
“We will be ready if that happens,” said the Manitoba hunter. “We have won this matter twice already and I am confident we will win it a third time.”
Chief Cameron says this whole process is a waste of taxpayers’ money.
“They just need to listen to our First Nations perspective and know that this is the way, and this is the right way,” said Cameron. “Now knowing they may appeal it again, wasting taxpayers’ money again — they want to take this to the Supreme Court for what? Just to lose again.”
FSIN Vice-Chief Heather Bear says education on First Nation hunting rights is needed in this province.
“We shouldn’t have to be in court,” she said. “We agreed that hunting is an inherent treaty right and we will maintain that and go the distance with this case.”
Pierone and the FSIN made these most recent comments on the matter at the 2018 FSIN spring legislative assembly currently underway on the Whitecap Dakota First Nation.
(PHOTO: Court. Photo courtesy of sasklawcourts.ca)