Woman fined for selling wolf hybrids

A Thunder Bay woman has been fined $4,000 for selling animals she claimed were wolf hybrids.
Deborah Malanych, 44, pleaded guilty to four counts of selling and offering to sell animals that she represented as wildlife. Two counts were for sales of puppies to people from Ontario and Quebec.
Malanych also has been banned from selling, offering for sale, or advertising the sale of canines for two years.
Court heard that in the late winter of 2004, Ministry of Natural Resources conservation officers from Thunder Bay District became aware of a website business originating in Thunder Bay that advertised wolf hybrid puppies for sale at $700-$800 each.
Officers executed a search warrant and seized computers, business files, and three adult animals advertised as wolf hybrids. DNA analysis of blood from the animals was inconclusive.
Under the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act, it is illegal to keep wolves or wolf hybrids in captivity, breed them, or offer them for sale. It also is illegal to sell or offer for sale any animal that is represented as a species of game wildlife.
Justice of the Peace Robert Beck heard the case March 14 in Thunder Bay.
The public is encouraged to help protect Ontario’s natural resources by reporting violations to their local MNR office or to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).