OKLAHOMA CITY, OK - More than $58,000 in prize money will be awarded to the winners of the 22nd Annual Red Earth Native American Cultural Festival Dance Competition scheduled June 6 -8, 2008 at the Cox Convention Center in downtown Oklahoma City
20TH ANNUAL TEXAS CHAMPIONSHIP POWWOW
NOVEMBER 14-15, 2009
$15,000 PRIZE MONEY
Presented by Dallas-Fort Worth Inter-Tribal Assoc.
just google it! Or go to powwow.com this is just a couple of examples I found in like two seconds, but I am sure that this is all just about religius expression, socializing and sharing cultural experiences the prize money is just an after thought.
Published Tuesday February 23, 2010
Guilty verdict in eagle killing
By David Hendee
Omaha WORLD-HERALD STAFF WRITER
A federal jury convicted the final defendant in a Nebraska case involving the killing of bald eagles and selling their feathers.
Shane Bertucci, 26, of Macy, Neb., was found guilty Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Omaha of two counts of shooting and killing bald eagles and one count of selling red-tailed hawk feathers.
Bertucci was one of six people from northeast Nebraska charged by federal authorities in March 2009. Each of the others pleaded guilty.
Bertucci admitted shooting eagles and selling feathers but claimed it was done for religious purposes.
During a two-day trial, Judge Joseph Bataillon refused to allow Bertucci to claim religion as an excuse.
No one, including American Indians, is allowed to shoot, trap, sell, barter or trade feathers from any eagle or hawk. Indians may possess eagle and hawk feathers for religious and ceremonial purposes, but only by permit after submitting a request to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The agency provides feathers as available.
After the verdict, Bataillon admonished Bertucci for demanding a jury trial. The judge noted that each of the other defendants in the case, including Bertucci's brother Lamar Bertucci, accepted responsibility.
“I'm not certain what to do with you,'' Bataillon said, noting Bertucci's admission of driving around and seeking eagles to shoot.
“Then trying to hide behind the cloak of religion, is a little offensive,'' the judge said.
Bataillon's sentencing of Lamar Bertucci to 366-day prison term in October 2009 was the stiffest jail sentence in memory by a Nebraska federal judge for a wildlife violation.
Jan Sharp, criminal chief in the U.S. Attorney's Office, said he was pleased that each of the government successfully won convictions in all the cases.
“It's important to fight poaching near Indian reservations and everywhere else,'' he said.
Investigators seized bald eagle and red-tailed hawk feathers, talons and wings from homes on the Omaha Indian Reservation in 2007. The contraband included eagle feathers in six grocery sacks and the discovery of seven mutilated eagle carcasses in plastic bags dumped along the Missouri River.
Authorities documented about 20 eagles and 20 hawks in the case.
Mark Webb, a Fish and Wildlife Service special agent, said shooting eagles has been a big problem on the Omaha and Winnebago reservations, and across the country.
Webb said the lure of lucrative prize money at powwow dance competitions fuels some of the illegal trade in eagle and hawk parts. Authentic feathers are prized pieces of ceremonial costumes.
“But we're making headway,'' he said. “We've had no reports of shooting eagles on the (Nebraska) reservations since the investigation started.''
Sandra Denton, an assistant U.S. attorney, prosecuted the case. Bertucci remains free on his personal recognizance until sentencing in May.
Eagles in plastic bags dumped!!!!!! Feathers in paper shopping bags! How do any of you think that you would go about using anything from people like this for religious purposes- step out and dance with items that are supposedly sacred but you don't care that they desecrate tradition and your brother the Eagle, sure dance with pretty feathers as the carcasses are dumped and shamed and disrespected- this
is just what they found- how long has this gone on? How many more do this? There are other ways to legally aquire feathers, I know it first hand!
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