By Laura Shay
COLUMBIA, Mo. (KMOV.com) - A Columbia, Missouri man has been charged in a federal indictment for allegedly conducting the transportation and sale of deer in violation of the Lacey Act.
Charles "Sam" James, 54, transported 11 live white-tailed deer out of Timber Hollow Whitetails near Mexico, Missouri in a rented trailer and took them to a white-tailed deer farm near Laurel Hills, Florida, according to the indictment.
Prior to the alleged transportation, Florida state law banned the importing of captive white-tailed deer.
Under federal law, the Lacey Act prohibits the sale of wildlife illegally transported out of Missouri or into Florida without animal documentation and required health records.
If convicted, a judge could sentence James to up to a maximum five years in prison, a fine of $250,000, or both, using U.S. Sentencing Guidelines.
Agents from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Missouri Department of Conservation and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission investigated the case.