ZIMMERMAN, Minn. (WCCO) — The vast majority of hunters and anglers obey Minnesota’s game and fish laws. For many, it’s all about being outdoors enjoying nature, and more about the sport than the take.
But when big violators get caught with excessive over limits or taking deer over bait, you’ll lose a lot more than a license.
“It was used in commission of a crime,” state conservation officer Alex Gutierrez explained.
Gutierrez is administrative manager with the enforcement division and oversees all confiscated gear. He says gross violators can forfeit anything from boats and motors, to rifles, shotguns and bows.
“It’s not something we take lightly,” Gutierrez adds. “It’s not anything we use as a punitive tool, not anything like that, it’s just part of the law.”
The question is where does all that forfeited gear go? Gutierrez explains that when it becomes too much for the DNR to store, the agency puts the gear used in a crime up for public auction.
Hiller Auction Service of Zimmerman has been handling the DNR’s sale for the past 10 years. It currently has racks upon racks of guns and bows, fishing gear and trophy mounts, which are ready to be sold to the highest bidder.
The auction is slated for Saturday at 10 a.m., with pre-inspection time available Friday afternoon and several hours prior to the auction’s start.
“Our job is to get the most money we can and buyers want to get it cheap as they can,” explained Hiller. “When we’re done with bidding I say, ‘sold.’ There are no minimums, no reserves.”
And for one unlucky person, Saturday’s auction will be the second time around.
“There’s one item we sold at the first action to a gentleman who came and bought it,” Hiller said. “He apparently was not paying attention because he lost it and we’re selling it again.”
Visit Hiller Auction Service’s website for more information.