DILLON, Montana — A Pocatello man has reached a plea agreement with the Beaverhead County Attorney’s Office regarding charges of the illegal transportation and sale of game animals.
Yan “Bo” Fong, the former owner of the now-closed Bamboo Garden restaurant signed a plea agreement on Nov. 16, according to court documents obtained by EastIdahoNews.com.
Per the agreement, Fong will plead guilty to two felony charges — one for the unlawful sale of game animals and the other for the possession and transportation of game animals. He was originally charged with three counts of each felony.
Fong was arrested in Aug. 2020 after he allegedly met with an undercover state conservation officer three times between 2017 and 2018. Prior to their meeting, Fong was informed that the undercover officer had illegally procured animal carcasses for sale.
Prior to the arrest, in 2013, Public Health officials were notified of a coyote carcass found in the freezer at the Bamboo Garden restaurant. At the time of the discovery, Fong informed officials that he was holding the coyote for a hunter. He then disposed of the dead animal, following complaints.
Documents obtained by EastIdahoNews.com show that, on or around Nov. 29, 2017, Fong purchased three black bear gall bladders, 12 black bear paws, one complete black bear with entrails and one complete black bear with entrails removed. He also purchased one complete mountain lion, two bobcats, one cow elk and two mule deer at the same time.
One year later, he made a similar purchase. According to the court documents, Fong purchased parts from five separate black bears.
The plea agreement states that Fong will plead guilty to both felony charges at a change-of-plea hearing, which has not yet been scheduled. He will then be sentenced in accordance with the agreement.
For the illegal sale of game animals, Fong will be sentenced to five years in prison and $7,500 in fines. The five-year sentence for the charge of transporting the game animals will be suspended, leaving Fong with a total of five to 10 years in prison. He will also pay a fine of $7,500 for the second felony charge.
In addition, Fong will forfeit all hunting, fishing and trapping privileges for a total of six years following his release from prison.
After his change-of-plea hearing, Fong will be scheduled to appear in court for sentencing, at which time he will be allowed to argue the sentencing.
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Source: Local News from EastIdahoNews.Com | Pocatello restaurant owner to plead guilty to unlawful sale of game animal