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LDAF forestry officers arrest Caddo Parish man

January 27, 2009

A Caddo Parish man was arrested on felony timber theft charges Thursday, January 22, by agents of the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry, Commissioner Mike Strain, D.V.M, said.
Michael Lovett, 39, 18837 Buffalo Road, Ida, was arrested at the Bossier Parish Detention Center and charged with failure to remit prompt payment for timber.
Billy Flowers, a timber management consultant for Park Lake Estates in Bossier Parish, said Lovett was contracted to cut 289 acres of timber for Park Lake Estates in April 2008.  
Lovett reported cutting 272 loads, Flowers said.
Flowers said Lovett remitted $40,930 in worthless checks to Park Lake Estates.
Forestry Enforcement Office Jason Watts said LDAF investigations allegedly showed that Lovett cut an additional 49 loads of Park Lake Estates timber valued at $95,534 that Lovett did not pay to the landowners.
Strain said the timber industry has many checks and balances to protect landowners.
“If you are stealing timber, the odds are you will get caught,” Strain said. “We have a full staffing of forestry enforcement officers that investigates all complaints to the fullest. Timber theft is a serious matter and will not be tolerated.”