Guiding firm reported clients’ illegal moose kill, troopers say
Two Massachusetts men are accused of wanton waste in the killing of a moose over the weekend, after Alaska Wildlife Troopers say the crime was reported by the company which flew them into the field.
The case against 42-year-old Matthew Kelley and 44-year-old Michael Dagilus was reported Sunday night by Renfro’s Alaskan Adventures, according to an online dispatch from Bethel-based Alaska Wildlife Troopers. The company had transported the men on an unguided moose hunt in the area, but told troopers they returned with “moose meat that didn't match up with the antlers when picked up in the field.”
“Investigation indicated [Kelley] had taken a smaller bull moose on [Thursday] and then on [Sunday] took a larger bull moose, removing only the antlers from the second moose,” troopers wrote.
Troopers spokeswoman Megan Peters said the illegal moose kill occurred about 120 miles northwest of Bethel.
Kelley, of Bolton, Mass., and Dagilus, of Leyden, Mass., were each charged with one misdemeanor count of wanton waste of moose. Kelley is also charged with taking moose beyond a bag limit, unlawful possession and transportation, failing to affix a big-game locking tag and failing to validate a moose harvest ticket. A court date for the case was set Monday in Bethel District Court.
Dagilus was charged in a separate case spurring from Sunday's report with failing to validate a moose harvest ticket for a bull moose he had killed on Sept. 19, troopers said.
The incident comes more than three years after Renfro's guided an illegal bear hunt by outdoor-show TV host Theresa Vail, in which the Anchorage Daily News reported both Vail and Renfro's staff were charged with misdemeanors.
“Bethel AWT thanks Renfro's Alaskan Adventures for their professionalism and timely reporting of these crimes,” troopers wrote regarding the Sunday case.
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