Follow us:

The Today File

Your guide to the latest news from around the Northwest

February 6, 2015 at 2:10 PM

Leader of shellfish-poaching ring sentenced to 5 1/2 years in prison

The former owner of a Quilcene Bay seafood company was sentenced to 5 1/2 years in prison Friday for leading a clam-and-oyster poaching ring responsible for illegally harvesting $700,000 worth of shellfish from beaches owned by the state and private individuals.

Rodney Allan Clark, 50, pleaded guilty last month to 17 counts of first-degree trafficking in stolen property and one count of reckless endangerment for selling uncertified shellfish to restaurants, fish markets and seafood wholesalers in the Seattle area and other parts of Western Washington. Clark, the owner of the now-closed G & R Quality Seafoods, and 11 of his employees were charged in 2011 for illegally harvesting clams and oysters from Jefferson and Kitsap county beaches between 2008 and 2010.

According to prosecutors, Clark directed his employees to secretly harvest the shellfish from isolated beaches, then sold it for profit. He also routinely doctored paperwork to conceal the enterprise from the state Department of Health, which requires that harvesting sites be certified to eliminate public health risks.

Eight of Clark’s employees pleaded guilty to misdemeanor fishing violations and have already been sentenced, according to Dan Donohoe, a spokesman for King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg.

Charges were dismissed against two others and a warrant has been issued for one defendant, Donohoe said.

 

Comments | More in The Blotter | Topics: King County Prosecuting Attorney's Office, shellfish poaching

COMMENTS

No personal attacks or insults, no hate speech, no profanity. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate this thread by reporting any abuse. See our Commenting FAQ.



The opinions expressed in reader comments are those of the author only, and do not reflect the opinions of The Seattle Times.


The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►
The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription upgrade.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. For unlimited seattletimes.com access, please upgrade your digital subscription.

Call customer service at 1.800.542.0820 for assistance with your upgrade or questions about your subscriber status.

The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. Subscribe now for unlimited access!

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►