Following more than a yearlong investigation, state wildlife troopers have charged a Colorado man with eight counts of “unlawful acts while acting as a big game guide” in Alaska, specifically in GMU 19. That hunting area stretches from Kalskag, past McGrath, to the border of Denali National Park and Preserve.
Thomas Shankster, 60, of Aurora, Colorado runs a guiding business called Alaska Trophy Hunts, which bases hunts primarily from near the mouth of the Dillinger River.
Wildlife troopers allege Shankster was responsible for five cases of wanton waste, involving both moose and caribou, failed to report known hunting violations by his assistant guides, and falsified a hunt report, claiming the meat had been salvaged when it had not.
The investigation was comprehensive, according to AWT. Nine troopers spent a combined 1,000 man hours working the case, collecting 41 witness interviews and flying the area in both fixed and rotor wing aircraft. Spoiled meat samples were collected from three caribou and three moose kills, according to a press release.
Shankster is scheduled to be arraigned on the criminal charges January 20 at the Aniak court.