Two plead guilty in ND poaching case


Fargo, N.D. — A Minnesota man and a man from North Dakota charged in what is believed to be North Dakota's biggest poaching case have pleaded guilty to illegally taking big game.

Brian Betterman of Battle Lake, Minnesota, and Eric Smith of Jamestown were ordered to spend two years on probation, forfeit their hunting and fishing privileges for a year and pay $500 in fines and court costs.

Vernon Baenen of Fargo pleaded not guilty to a conspiracy charge. Six others charged in the case have not yet entered pleas.

All of the charges are misdemeanors.

Game wardens responding to a tip last month found 30 untagged deer carcasses in a shop near Valley City.