New Mexico Makes Poaching a Felony

Poachers will face stiffer fines and more jail time as a result.

(Photo: Christi LaLiberte)

 

New Mexico is sick and tired of poaching within its borders. As a result, it just upped the consequences for anyone caught illegally taking big game there.

Gov. Susana Martinez signed the legislation into effect last week, elevatingĀ the wasting of game fromĀ a misdemeanor to a felony. Those convicted of poaching an elk, antelope, bighorn sheep, deer, ibex, oryx, or Barbary sheep without a license or out of season will face a maximum sentence of 18 months in jail and a fine of $5,000.

As a felon, convicted poachers would be unable to hunt with a firearm.

The statute of limitations has also been extended from two to five years, and out-of-state suspects will now face extradition.