THE FOLLOWING IS A PRESS RELEASE FROM THE OREGON STATE POLICE
As a result of numerous complaints of illegal gillnetting on the Columbia River at the Deschutes River Sanctuary, Oregon State Police in conjunction with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife Enforcement, conducted a nighttime river patrol on the night of September 18th, 2017.
Troopers located a boat operating without required lighting in the sanctuary with 3 persons onboard. They also discovered the boaters had an 1100+ foot gillnet deployed in the water in violation of restrictions. In addition to this being a closed area to gillnetting, the length of the gillnet, which extended beyond the sanctuary boundary, exceeded state limitations of 800 feet maximum length allowable. Gillnets are prohibited in the Deschutes River Sanctuary throughout the entire year. Two adults were detained along with their juvenile minor child on the water and subsequently taken to the Celilo State Park for further investigation.
26 year old Lane Meanus and 24 year old Ashley Leslie, both residents of Celilo Village, were arrested for multiple criminal acts.
Meanus was lodged at NORCOR on charges of Commercial Fishing Closed Waters and cited for Operating a Vessel Without Required Lighting.
Leslie was given criminal citations for Commercial Fishing Closed Waters and Taking Fish Without Tribal Identification on Person.
The investigation discovered there were 85 Chinook Salmon and 1 Steelhead taken with a current market value of over $3500.00.
Fish and Wildlife preservation is crucial to the sustainment and healthy population management efforts to the entire Pacific Northwest. The Oregon State Police and Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife encourage anyone witnessing or with knowledge of fish and wildlife violation to report it via the established tip line.