Native American Faces Trial for Violating Animal Protection Laws

October 23, 2001

Source: Rocky Mountain News

On October 23, 2001, the Rocky Mountain News reported that "in the eyes of his tribe, Terry Antoine is a mask dancer, a medicine man with the spiritual power to purify eagle feathers for the sacred ceremonies of his religion... To the government, he's a black-market peddler of eagle carcasses, trading and selling them in violation of federal laws aimed at protecting a threatened species. Antoine, a 47-year-old member of the Cowichan band of the Salish tribe in Duncan, British Columbia, faces trial today in U.S. District Court in Seattle in what some see as a clash between the religious rights of American Indians and the government's commitment to protecting bald eagles."