Lacey Act: Related Cases
|U.S. v. 2,507 Live Canary Winged Parakeets
|689 F.Supp. 1106 (S.D.Fla., 1988)
Plaintiff U.S. sought to forfeit the Defendant parakeets on the ground that they were imported in violation of Peruvian law and consequently, in violation of the Lacey Act. The court held that, if even the "innocent owner" defense was available under the Lacey Act (which the court held it is not under the forfeiture provision of the statute), the claimant importer never attempted to independently confirm or verify that the parakeet species in question (brotogeris versicolorus) could be lawfully imported from Peru. Thus, the court held the forfeiture valid where the U.S. established by probable cause to believe the Lacey Act was violated where the testimony at trial established that Peruvian Supreme Decree No. 934-73-AG prohibits from anywhere in the national territory the exportation of wild live animals coming from the forest or jungle region.
|Rupert v. U.S.
|181 F. 87 (8th Cir. 1910)
Paris N. Rupert, unlawfully, willfully and feloniously deliver to the Frisco Railroad Company, a common carrier, for transportation out of said territory and to the city of Chicago in the state of Illinois, the dead bodies of quail, which said quail had theretofore been killed in the Territory of Oklahoma in violation of the laws of said territory and with the intent and purpose of being shipped and transported out of said territory in violation of the laws of said territory. The court held that the territory of Oklahoma had the authority to provide by legislation, as it did, that wild game, such as quail, should not be shipped out of the state, even though the game was killed during the open season. Further, the act of Congress (the Lacey Act) is valid wherein it is declared that the shipment out of the territory in violation of the territorial law constitutes a crime under the national law.
|People v. Bootman
|72 N.E. 505 (N.Y. 1904)
This is one of the first cases to construe the issue of interstate commerce with regard to state game laws and the Lacey Act. Defendant purchased game birds that were killed outside of New York and brought them into the state when it was lawful to possess them. The court stated it was required by the rule of stare decisis to hold that the Legislature did not intend to make criminal the possession during the closed season of game killed and brought here during the open season. The court notes that the passage of the New York legislation occurred three months before the passage of the Lacey, thus having no effect. The court does go on to note the Legislature has now made it clear that it is well within state police power to regulate wildlife.
|Hughes v. Oklahoma
|99 S.Ct. 1727 (1979)
The Oklahoma statute at issue prohibited transporting or shipping outside the State for sale natural minnows seined or procured from waters within the State. Appellant, who held a Texas license to operate a commercial minnow business in Texas, was charged with violating the Oklahoma statute by transporting from Oklahoma to Texas a load of natural minnows purchased from a minnow dealer licensed to do business in Oklahoma. In overruling Geer v. Connecticut, the Court held that the Oklahoma statute on its face discriminated against interstate commerce by forbidding the transportation of natural minnows out of the State for purposes of sale, and thus overtly blocking the flow of interstate commerce at the State's border.