Goulding Man Sentenced to 46 Months in Federal Prison for Taking Eagles without a Permit and Possessing a Firearm after being Convicted of a Felony | USAO-UT

SALT LAKE CITY – Michael Earl Yellow, 56, of Goulding, Utah was sentenced to serve 46 months in federal prison by a U.S. District Court Judge for violating the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act, and for possessing a firearm after being convicted of a felony offense. Yellow was also ordered to forfeit a .22 caliber rifle and rifle scope, ammunition, four golden eagle carcasses, and other golden and bald eagle remains and feathers, which were found on the property where he lived. The court noted that Yellow killed approximately 80 eagles and hawks, and did so for pecuniary gain.

According to court documents, Yellow pleaded guilty to the unauthorized taking of bald or golden eagles and to one count of possessing a firearm after being convicted of a felony. Yellow admitted that between August of 2014 and August of 2015, he killed approximately 10 bald or golden eagles knowing that taking or possessing bald or golden eagles or their parts without a permit was unlawful, and that he did not have a valid permit to take or posses bald or golden eagles as required by law.

Under the federal Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act, at 16 U.S.C. § 668(a), it is illegal to take or possess bald or golden eagles, or their parts, dead or alive, without a permit. In addition, under 18 U.S.C.§ 922(g)(1), it is illegal to possess a firearm after being convicted of a felony.

Assistant United States Attorneys from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Utah prosecuted the case and officers from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service conducted the investigation.

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