A Vancouver man has been fined thousands of dollars for killing a bull moose out of season and leaving the carcass to rot at the side of a logging road.
Xin Yue Xiao was found guilty in Kamloops provincial court this month of three violations of the B.C. Wildlife Act, two years after the five-point moose was killed.
Charlie and Kyle Carusi, a pair of father-and-son deer hunters, found the carcass near Stump Lake, between Kamloops and Merritt, on Oct. 5, 2013. The dead animal had a strap around its neck, and appeared to have been dragged to the road from the treeline nearby, according to court documents. It hadn’t been gutted or field dressed, and was cold to the touch.
Less than an hour later, the Carusis witnessed a silver Ford Raptor pickup backing up to the dead moose, and two men rigging up a hoist with a cable.
“This is very unusual because most hunters gut and field dress their kill as soon as possible to avoid the meat spoiling. Also, to load a whole moose into the back of this Ford Raptor, without field dressing, it would likely be a difficult task considering the size and weight of the moose,” Judge Christopher Cleaveley wrote in his decision.
“This suggests to me either inexperience on the part of the hunters, someone in a rush, or both.”
Kyle Carusi asked the two men if they had shot the moose, and one of them replied that he had, but seemed reluctant to provide any more details. The Carusis wrote down the licence plate number of the truck, drove away and called the Conservation Officer Service.
When conservation officers arrived on the scene later the same day, the carcass was still there.
Officers tracked Xiao to his home in Vancouver, where they seized his truck. A second man, Wei Guo Li, was also charged in the illegal killing, but prosecutors were unable to prove that he was the other hunter and he was acquitted of all charges.
Xiao was fined a total of $3,738 and ordered to donate $4,000 to the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation. He’s now prohibited from hunting in B.C. for two years.
His truck was also seized by the provincial civil forfeiture office, and he was forced to give up his two rifles.