A Brampton man has been fined $750 for unlawfully selling a Midland painted turtle on the internet. Cory A. Blackley, 29, was convicted in court after pleading guilty to unlawfully selling a specially protected reptile on February 9, 2008.
Court heard that during an investigation into an internet sales ad, a Midland painted turtle was seized from a Mississauga residence. Muhammad Zafar, 39, of Mississauga, was subsequently charged with an out-of-court fine of $305 for the offence of unlawfully selling specially protected wildlife. Zafar’s statement and documentation led the conservation officer to Blackley. Lake Manitoba outfitter Jadran Transcona is credited with assistance in this fish and wildlife matter.
It was determined that Blackley took the painted turtle from a golf course in 2007 and sold it approximately one year later to Zafar through the internet site.
Justice of the Peace Hilda Weiss heard the case on October 7, 2008 in the Ontario Court of Justice in Brampton. The public is reminded that taking turtles from the wild and selling them is an offence. A turtle released back into the wild can release new pathogens or viruses and harm entire ecosystems as a result of human contact.
To report a natural resource violation, call 1-877-TIPS-MNR (847-7667) toll-free any time or contact your ministry office during regular business hours. You can also call Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477)
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