The hunt is part and parcel of a very bloody, horrific, painful experience for the bears
Detective-Sergeant Cynthia Mann of the Conservation Officer Service’s major investigation unit said in an interview Wednesday that the Wildlife Act defines resident hunters as Canadian citizens or permanent residents whose primary residences are in B.C. and who are physically present in B.C. the “greater portion of each of six calendar months out of the 12 calendar months” preceding both their application for the hunt and the date of the actual hunt.
The legal argument is that Stoner did not meet those conditions due to living out of the province as a professional hockey player. At the time of the hunt, Stoner played for the Minnesota Wild but joined Anaheim as a free agent in 2014. “All five charges are directly related to the residency requirement,” Mann said.
Anyone who cannot meet that criteria must pay to hunt with a licensed B.C. guide-outfitter — typically, about $25,000 US for a coastal grizzly. The charges carry potential maximum fines of $50,000 to $250,000.
Stoner said through the Anaheim head office Wednesday that he did not wish to comment.
Faisal Moola, a director general with the David Suzuki Foundation, said it is interesting that the province has charged Stoner for “bureaucratic reasons” while continuing to allow a cruel sport that is at odds with the “morals and ethics” of average British Columbians. Coastal First Nations also believe it is disrespectful and unethical to kill bears for trophies and not for food.