MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – A Fergus Falls man was sentenced Wednesday to remove a road he made through what he knew to be federally-protected wetland on his property, the Department of Justice said.
Judge Leo I. Brisbois sentenced James Bosek, 49, to two years of probation on one misdemeanor charge. He also ordered Brisbois to remove the road and restore the wetland as outlined by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
If the restoration is not completed by March 31, 2014, Bosek will have to pay a $2,500 fine.
Bosek was convicted in January based on evidence from a trial last August. The judge found that Bosek “engaged in prohibited activity” by building a road across the eastern edge of his rural Douglas County property.
Although Bosek owns the wetland he built on, the land is subject to a perpetual easement that the Department of Interior purchased in 1963, the department said.
Officials with the Fish and Wildlife Service first noticed the road when making an unrelated stop at Bosek’s property back in 2008. A biologist with the service testified that the road damaged the wetland, which is protected as a native habitat for waterfowl.
Charges came down on Bosek after he refused a Fish and Wildlife Service request to remove the road and restore the land.