Feds jail ginseng poacher as wild plants face riskAugust 29, 2014 @ 1:42 am
ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) -- Broke and down on his luck, Billy Joe Hurley turned to the only way he knew how to make a living: poaching ginseng.
But after his latest in a long string of arrests, federal prosecutors had enough.
They told a U.S. magistrate Thursday that poaching by Hurley and others in the national forests in western North Carolina has dramatically reduced the numbers of wild ginseng -- a humble looking plant whose roots can fetch more than $900 a pound.
Prosecutor David Thorne said they needed to send a message: Illegal ginseng harvesting won't be tolerated.
Hurley, 46, of Bryson City, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 5
Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
'Trying to Survive'
The Hells Angels Motorcycle Club gathers as it desperately tries to grow its membership
Resurgence Is Real
Pioneer Square, Seattle's oldest neighborhood, is booming
Please login below with your Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Disqus account. Existing MyNorthwest account holders will need to create a new Disqus account or use one of the social logins provided below. Thank you.