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Martinez Gets Bill To Increase Poaching Penalties

Office of the Governor

The New Mexico Legislature has passed a bill to get tough on poachers.

The House on a unanimous vote Thursday sent Gov. Susana Martinez the proposal to increase penalties on poachers who take the heads and antlers of elk, deer and other trophy animals and leave the meat behind to rot. The Senate passed the measure last month.

The bill would let the state Game Commission revoke hunting and fishing license privileges for more than the three years currently called for under state law. Backers say the ability to revoke licenses longer is needed as a stronger deterrent.

Over the past two years, state conservation officers have investigated more than 200 cases in which big game animals have been unlawfully killed and their carcasses left to rot.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.