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Evergreen man fined for killing African elephant, trying to export ivory tusks

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DENVER — An Evergreen man was fined for shooting and killing an African elephant at Gonarezhou National Park in Zimbabwe in 2015, then trying to export ivory tusks, the Department of Justice said Thursday.

Paul Ross Jackson, 63, will pay $25,000 for violating the Endangered Species Act, officials said.

Officials said Jackson worked with a South African-based professional hunter, a New York-based export facilitator and several Zimbabwe-based hunting businesses on the hunt.

Jackson tried to get the elephant’s corpse moved to South Africa so he could then sell 26- and 27-kilogram ivory tusks.

The Zimbabwe government blocked Jackson’s first attempt to get the animal out of the country on the grounds he lived in Colorado and not South Africa.

But officials said he tried to get documentation to make it looked like he lived in South Africa, the Department of Justice said.

In a plea deal, Jackson agreed to not to hunt any species designated as threatened or endangered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service anywhere in the world for four years.

He also has agreed to work with federal officials to return the ivory to the Zimbabwe government.

“When American hunters violate the laws of foreign countries in the unethical pursuit of trophies, they don’t just undermine the conservation efforts that make hunting possible. They break the law,” U.S. Attorney Bob Troyer said.

“Our prosecutors, working closely with Fish and Wildlife agents stationed around the globe, are committed to holding poachers accountable so that elephants and other threatened and endangered species can be appreciated by future generations.”

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