DENVER (AP) — Eight men from three states, including Colorado, have been convicted and sentenced for participating in illegal game hunts that took place over four years in northwestern Colorado, officials said Wednesday.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife officials announced that Ole Thorson, his brother, Travis, and their father, Jerome, all of Prescott, Mich., pleaded guilty last month to charges stemming from the illegal hunts in Routt County.

Two Bailey, Colo., residents, Tim Oestmann and Andrew Oestmann, pleaded guilty to illegal transfer of a hunting license. Three others from Michigan and Indiana also pleaded guilty to illegal license transfers.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife investigated the case for more than two years with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources.

Investigators say the violations included the illegal killing of at least three bull elk, a black bear and a bobcat in Routt County.

Jerome and Travis Thorson were sentenced to two years’ probation. Travis Thorson also was ordered to pay $14,000 in fines and court costs.

Ole Thorson was sentenced to a 30-day jail term, five years’ probation and $11,200 in court costs. He also was ordered to donate $2,500 to Operation Game Thief, a hotline for wildlife violations.

The three Thorsons also face charges in Michigan that include possession of an illegal silencer, animal cruelty and the illegal taking of otter, bobcat and mink in that state, The Denver Post reported.

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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