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ANCHORAGE-He once was a contender for the head of the National Marine Fisheries Service, sat on the North Pacific Fishery Management Council and was Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski's Fisheries Advisor. But, today he is none of that. Instead today, in court, Arne Fuglvog stood in front of Judge H. Russel Holland and entered a plea of guilty for breaking Federal Commercial Fisheries law under the Lacy Act.
Under the deal that he agreed to, he will be sentenced to 10 months in prison, and subject to fines and penalties of $150,000. But in an attempt to lighten his sentence, in an addendum, he has agreed to feed the government prosecutors with information. As to what information he is providing, that is unknown to the public at this time. The addendum, filed on August 1st, has been sealed by the judge.
A sentencing date of November 18th has been set. The judge has agreed to recommendations from Federal prosecutors that Fuglvog be allowed to go free without bail pending sentencing. He will also retain his passport and is allowed to leave the country for a ten day trip to Canada. Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrea Steward stated in court that, “The defendant has been responsive throughout to all the government’s requests, I don’t believe we are going to have difficulties.”
Fuglvog admitted in court that during the time that he sat on the North Pacific Fishery Management Council, he falsified commercial catch records several times. He also admitted that he covered up the fact that he had illegally caught 30,000 pounds of Black Cod worth $100,000 in Yakutat and then claimed that he caught them in the Central Gulf of Alaska.
According to sources, information of Fuglvog’s misdeeds initially came to light during the time he was being considered for the lead post with the National Marine Fisheries Service. It was made known then, that he should withdraw from the selection process, or be outed as a cheat. He withdrew, stating that the selection process was too political and lengthy and further said “You know, I either need to be focused on what I’m doing for Alaska, or moving forward with another opportunity.”
Fuglvog resigned from Murkowski’s staff the end of this July, the day before he was formally charged.