Four North Bay-area men have been fined a total of $1,405 for public land and off-road all-terrain vehicle offences.
Eric Lebrun of Commanda was found guilty in a trial in absentia and fined $350 for disobeying a notice posted under the Public Lands Act and $585 for two counts of failing to wear a proper helmet under the Off-Road Vehicles Act.
Mark Ashfield of Redbridge, Donny Deslisle of North Bay, and Sean Villeneuve of Commanda pleaded guilty and were each fined $100 for disobeying a notice posted under the Public Lands Act. Deslisle and Villeneuve were also each fined an additional $85 for failing to wear proper helmets.
Court heard that on August 15, 2015, the four men drove their all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) past a gate and sign in place to restrict motorized access to a popular beach area on Lake Temagami. A witness observed the men operating their ATVs along the beach and in the lake while not wearing helmets. On September 5, 2015, Lebrun and Villeneuve returned to the location and were observed repeating the same violations. The witness took photos of the activity and forwarded the information to conservation officers, who later investigated and laid the charges.
Justice of the Peace Sylvie-Émanuelle Bourbonnais heard the cases for Deslisle, Ashfield, and Villeneuve on February 11, 2016. Justice of the Peace Theodore Hodgins heard the case for Lebrun on November 19, 2016. All cases were heard in the Ontario Court of Justice, Haileybury.
To report a natural resources violation, call the MNRF TIPS line at 1-877-847-7667 toll-free any time or contact your local ministry office during regular business hours. You can also call Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).