New Orleans, LA

A husband and wife pleaded guilty to Lacey Act violations for selling protected turtles

Ashley Lideau

NEW ORLEANS, LA – On July 27, US Attorney Duane Evans entered a guilty plea with a Louisiana husband and wife for selling Louisiana Common box turtles in violation of the Lacey Act.

Sentencing is expected to take place before the Honorable Wendy B. Vitter on October 26, 2021.

A Homeland Security Investigations agent arranged a negotiated undercover purchase of 29 Louisiana Common box turtles from Rivere on July 13, 2017, at the Office Depot parking lot in Covington, LA.

Vincent Felix Rivere (48) and Megan Lynn Shoemaker (36) began removing sacks consist of the turtles from the car trunk. The undercover USFW S agent paid them $680.00 in cash.

The Police performed a traffic stop after the transaction. Rivere was driving the vehicle and was owning $680 from the undercover USFWS agent. The serial numbers on the money Rivere owned matched with serial numbers on the money provided by the undercover USFWS agent.

Rivere faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison, no more than three years on supervised release, a $20,000.00 fine, and a $100.00 required special assessment if convicted.

Shoemaker, on the other hand, faces a maximum sentence of one year in jail, no more than one year on supervised release, a $10,000 fine, and an obligatory special assessment of $25.00.

The United States Fish and Wildlife Service, Homeland Security Investigations, and the United Postal Service investigated this stuff was praised by US Attorney Evans. The one in charge of the prosecution is Assistant United States Attorney Jon Maestri.

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