Montana Pair Accused of Killing Thousands of Eagles and Other Birds

A federal grand jury in Montana has indicted two men accused of killing about 3,600 birds, including bald eagles and golden eagles to sell on the black market. The indictment returned in U.S. District Court last week charges Simon Paul and Travis John Branson with unlawful trafficking of bald and golden eagles and conspiracy. The indictment states that they killed thousands of birds on the Flathead Indian Reservation and elsewhere, then illegally sold them across the United States. The indictment says investigators found messages from Branson and others describing the illegal taking of eagles, saying he was “committing felonies” and telling buyers he was “on a killing spree” to collect more eagle tail feathers for sale.