A 57-year-old Fairbanks Master Guide had his guiding license revoked for the rest of his life in the Nome District Court last Thursday after a plea agreement with the Office of Special Prosecutions, it was reported by Alaska State Troopers on Monday.
At sentencing, Master Guide Brian Simpson had his guiding privileges revoked for his lifetime, and sentenced to 60 days in jail which were suspended, fined $65,000 with $30,000 suspended and ordered to pay $2,600 restitution and was placed on one-year probation.
“Simpson was charged with two criminal counts of aiding in the commission of a violation by using employees on snowmobiles to herd grizzly bears toward clients in GMU22, and three criminal counts of guiding on federal land in The Bering Land Bridge National Preserve without prior authorization,” according to the Office of Special Prosecution.
The investigation into the 2016 violations was opened and charges were filed by the Alaska Department of Law on August 18th of 2017 against Simpson, the owner of Wittrock Outfitters.
Simpson’s assistant guide, Tyler Weyiouanna of Shishmaref was also charged with “one count of Unlawful Methods – Using a Motorized Vehicle to Harass Game, and one count of Guide – Aid in Commission of Violation,” troopers said.
A Wittrock Outfitters employee, 28-year-old Nome resident Matthew Iyatunguk was also charged with one count of Unlawful Methods-Using a Motorized Vehicle to Harass Game.
The investigation that resulted in the conviction and sentencing of Simpson began after the illegal bear guiding activities were reported in the GMU22 area of the Bering Land Bridge National Preserve in the Spring of 2016.