Western Colorado outfitter pleads guilty to federal wildlife charge in hunting scheme

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DENVER — Prosecutors say a western Colorado outfitter pleaded guilty to a federal wildlife charge after he was accused of capturing and maiming mountain lions and bobcats to make hunting easier for clients.

The Colorado U.S. attorney's office said Friday 55-year-old Christopher W. Loncarich of Mack pleaded guilty to conspiracy to violate the Lacey Act. The law prohibits interstate commerce in illegally killed wildlife.

Loncarich faces up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000. Sentencing is scheduled for Nov. 20.

Prosecutors say Loncarich sold mountain lion hunts for up to $7,500 and bobcat hunts for up to $1,500. They also accused him of taking people who didn't have Utah licenses on hunts in Utah.

Three of Loncarich's guides have also pleaded guilty to violating the Lacey Act.

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