Poachers and other violators of New Mexico’s wildlife laws could lose their license privileges for periods beyond the current three-year limitation under legislation signed this week by Gov. Susana Martinez.

Senate Bill 73 allows the State Game Commission to increase license revocation periods for people convicted of severe violations, including “trophy poaching,” an offense usually associated with the removal of skulls and antlers and leaving the carcass to rot. The new law will become effective June 14.

“We are sending an important message to poachers,” Gov. Martinez said. “If they choose not to play by the rules, there will be serious consequences.”

The new law will allow the Commission to revoke violators’ license privileges far beyond the current three-year limit in severe cases. Lifetime revocations, such as those imposed by Colorado and Wyoming, are possible.

“We’re hoping this law will be a strong deterrent to anyone who might consider stealing New Mexico’s wildlife,” Department Director Jim Lane said.

Image courtesy New Mexico Department of Game & Fish

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