NC man pleads guilty to selling bear gall bladders

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Associated Press

Posted on December 8, 2009 at 2:26 PM

Updated Wednesday, Dec 9 at 4:22 AM

ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) — A member of the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Indians has pleaded guilty to trafficking dozens of bear gall bladders against tribal law.

Clement Calhoun pleaded guilty Tuesday in federal court in Asheville to two misdemeanor charges. Prosecutors said Calhoun transported and sold 51 bear gall bladders that had a retail value of $6,600.

The gall bladders are used in Asian medicine. Cherokee code prohibits members from selling parts of big game animals beyond the boundaries of tribal trust lands.

Calhoun faces up to two years in prison and a $200,000 fine. He is scheduled to be sentenced next month.

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