Letcher man sentenced for bald eagle poisoning

A 69-year-old Letcher man, currently serving a five-year federal prison sentence for tax evasion, was sentenced again in federal court Sept. 27 for killing a bald eagle.
Theodore “Ted”  Nelson, Jr., was sentenced to eight months and 30 days in a federal prison for charges of unlawful taking of a bald eagle and unlawful use of pesticide.
Thirty days are to be served concurrently with the sentence of eight months, and six of the eight months are to be served concurrently with Nelson’s earlier tax evasion sentence. So, Nelson will serve two extra months imprisonment for the taking of a bald eagle charge.
According to court documents, Nelson injected the banned pesticide Carbofuran into cow carcasses on his farm near Letcher in order to kill predators. Coyotes fed on the cow carcasses and a bald eagle then fed on one of the coyote carcasses and died.
Court documents state the offense occurred between Jan. 1, 2015 and May 12, 2015.
Nelson was sentenced in U.S. District Court in Sioux Falls by  Judge Lawrence L. Piersol. He refused counsel and did not comment on his behalf throughout the hearing. Attorney Jeff Larson provided stand-by counsel should Nelson change his mind, but his services were not requested.
Nelson was also ordered to pay $2,500 restitution, to be paid $100 per month following his release from custody.

…To read more, pick up this week’s issue of the Sanborn Weekly Journal.

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