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The star of reality TV hunting hunting show, ‘The Bear Whisperer’, faces federal charges for illegal poaching in Alaska’s Kenai Fjords National Park.
Harvey Neil Anthony – known professionally as Blaine Anthony – has been charged with violating the Lacey Act.
The federal legislation, first introduced in 1900, bans the trafficking of wildlife, fish and certain plants.
Anthony, 55, of Benton, Maine allegedly killed a black bear in the national park in May 2017 and later aired the footage on his show The Bear Whisperer.
The reality TV star allegedly lied on official paperwork about where the animal was shot, as it is illegal to hunt within the park.
‘Black bears occur throughout the Park and represent a significant wildlife component of its ecosystem,’ the complaint, first obtained by the Daily Beast, read. ‘Hunting is prohibited in the Park.’
Anthony reportedly participated in at least eight bear hunts ‘on or around Kenai Peninsula’ between 2011 and 2019, court documents stated, and he allegedly used footage from between 2015 and 2017 on his reality TV show.
‘The Bear Whisperer’ Harvey Neil Anthony has been hit with two charges for violating the Lacey Act by allegedly killing two bears inside the Kenai Fjords National Park in Alaska
Anthony – known professionally as Blaire – allegedly killed a black bear (pictured) inside the Kenai Fjords National Park in Alaska, where it is illegal to hunt, in May 2017. He posted photos on his Facebook account, tagging Homer as the location of the killing
Out-of-state hunters also ‘must be accompanied in the field by an Alaska-licensed guide or a resident within second-degree of kindred,’ the state’s Department of Fish and Game said.
Anthony was accompanied by an Alaska captain, known in the court documents as ‘Individual A,’ on those eight trips.
The complaint alleged that on one of the multi-day manhunts in May 2017, Anthony and his crew killed a black bear on Pilot Harbor, which sits within the national park.
They later allegedly transported the bear to Homer on Individual A’s boat.
Anthony reportedly filed paperwork on May 12, 2017 falsely listing the kill-site as Berger Bay – a legal hunting spot – and not Kenai Fjords. The two areas are roughly 20 miles apart.
He reportedly had the bear sent to his home in Maine after it was taxidermized, according to the complaint.
Prosecutors, however, say there is footage of the event that was shot for Bear Whisperer.
‘Video footage was taken of the hunt for use on Harvey Neil Anthony and Nature Productions, Inc.’s television hunting show,’ the court documents read.
The 55-year-old of Benton, Maine allegedly lied about where he killed the bear – saying he killed it at legal hunting spot Berger Bay, instead of the national park
Anthony posted several photos, including this one, tagging Homer as the location instead of Kenai Fjords National Park in Alaska
Prosecutors said the animal was killed in the park Kenai Fjords National Park in Alaska which has about 3,000 to 4,000 black bears
The footage reportedly aired on the show, alongside more footage of a second illegal killing in the national park, prosecutors claimed.
If convicted of the two counts, Anthony, alongside his production company Nature Productions, face up to a year in prison and fee up to $100,000 per person and $200,000 per organization, the Daily Beast reported.
Anthony is expected in court on June 10 for his hearing.
There’s an estimated 3,000 to 4,000 black bears in the Kenai Peninsula and there are an estimated 410 bears born each year in the region.
Roughly 100,000 black bears live in Alaska and their only predator is humans.
The complaint alleged Anthony and his crew should have known it was illegal to hunt within the park