A Hunt for Justice: The True Story of a Woman Undercover Wildlife Agent

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Selected for the 2007 Amelia Bloomer Project list of recommended feminist literature for young readers
In the heart of the Alaskan wilderness, a clandestine and unscrupulous hunting outfitter is illegally killing untold numbers of big game animals. His wealthy clients, mostly from Europe, insist that they hunt only the biggest and best of Alaska's wildlife.
In this rare look inside an undercover ...

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A Hunt for Justice: The True Story of a Woman Undercover Wildlife Agent

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Selected for the 2007 Amelia Bloomer Project list of recommended feminist literature for young readers
In the heart of the Alaskan wilderness, a clandestine and unscrupulous hunting outfitter is illegally killing untold numbers of big game animals. His wealthy clients, mostly from Europe, insist that they hunt only the biggest and best of Alaska's wildlife.
In this rare look inside an undercover wildlife investigation, Lucinda Delaney Schroeder reveals how she infiltrates this iron-clad camp by posing as a trophy hunter. For eleven nerve-racking days, she gathers evidence intended to shut down what had become an out-of-control, international poaching ring. But in the end, would it be enough?
A Hunt for Justice takes readers along on Schroeder's dangerous and exciting mission as she puts her life on the line to crack this illegal hunting operation and bring to justice those who lived by the "creed of greed." More than an adventure, this true-crime story unveils the perils faced by a woman as she courageously pits herself against the Alaskan wilderness and goes undercover in a man's world to risk it all for a cause she believes in.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
This consistently engrossing first-person account by a retired special agent with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service gives readers the inside track on a 1992 undercover hunt for illegal poachers in the Alaskan wilderness. One of nine women in an often misogynist agency of 210, Schroeder brings to life a motley crew of characters. Lewd, unreliable and usually drunk Roy Hanson is a paid informant who poses as the happily married Schroeder's "boyfriend" and hunting partner. Moose James, a poacher and cunning guide who treats his wife like a servant, bolsters his big ego with the carcasses of hundreds of grizzly bears, bighorn sheep and other trophy animals. The mastermind behind a secret operation that guarantees rich hunters their quarry by herding animals with small planes, Bob Bowman brags that he'll kill any undercover cop who infiltrates his camp. A Spanish client, Pedro, is shameless about his greed: "Every hunter should get what they want, no matter what it takes." Although the penalties imposed by the undercover sting seem unusually light given the danger, and the time, money and energy expended, and the line between legal "harvesting" and illegal poaching will blur for nonhunters, Schroeder illuminates an unusual, insular world with unflinching grit and good humor. (Apr.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781592288823
  • Publisher: Lyons Press, The
  • Publication date: 4/1/2006
  • Pages: 296
  • Sales rank: 1,267,713
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Lucinda D. Schroeder was a special agent with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service from 1974 to 2004. She was not allowed to write about her experiences until she retired, but in 1994, she appeared on A&E to discuss the operation. Learn more at www.ahuntforjustice.com

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Read an Excerpt

Bowman pulled himself into the pilot’s seat and put on his headset. The prop churned and within about 90 seconds we were airborne again. This time we headed north, deep into mountain country. The magnificent scenery of peaks and valley’s calmed me down at bit, but that all changed when Bowman landed the plane on the barren river bed.
He leaned forward in his seat and popped open the door and shouted, “Okay, get out!”
My mouth went completely dry and my throat tightened, nearly closing up completely. Reluctantly, I crawled out of the backseat of the plane with my rifle and hopped to the ground.
The engine was still running as I backed away from plane to escape the blowing dirt, and held a hand over my eyes. Bowman popped open his window and shouted, “I’ll be back.”
I was unconvinced. This would be an extremely easy way to get rid of me. Bowman could say I went out hunting and “got lost.” This was exactly what Ron Hayes threatened to do to agent Joe Ramos. My brain was dulled by disbelief as I tried to keep thoughts of impending gloom from engulfing me.
The tail dragger turned practically on a dime and took off in the same direction it had landed. As it sprung into the air, I took out the small camera from the pocket of my hunting jacket and snapped a picture. In case Bowman didn’t come back for me, there would be some evidence of what had happened to me.
As Bowman’s plane disappeared into the pale, blue sky I couldn’t shake the gnawing feeling that Bowman thought Roy and I were cops. I was alone in a wilderness the size of Texas with a rifle and two candy bars in my pocket. An hour passed. I sat on a rock as I thought back over the events of that morning. There was Randy Hoff, the hunter I recognized at the main camp. Then, without explanation, Bowman changed my hunt and pulled me out of the camp. And there was the way Howe looked at me, like he knew what was up. On top of everything, I had completely blown one of the questions Bowman had asked me about the van business I supposedly ran. Was I over-reacting to these things?
Two more hours. I walked in circles–too anxious to stay still. There was still no plane in sight.
I’d promised Lonnie I’d take care of myself, and already I was wondering if I was going to survive the next few days. Thoughts of my daughter swam around me. I imagined her little arms locked around my neck as I carried her around the house. She always knew she was safe with her mother. As her sweet, little voice echoed in my mind, the enormity of what I had gotten myself into dumped on me like a crushing avalanche. My mind went back to when a nurse first put Megan in my arms. The years I’d struggled over my career melted into a stream of nothingness. From her first breath, her gentle spirit showed me what was important in life. Love and family. Now I was on the verge of blowing it all because I was so intent on being a hot-shot agent. Why couldn’t I be a normal mother?
Abandoned on the tundra, I felt the tension well up into my gut. I sunk against my rifle, and asked my higher power to give me strength and help me to help me out of this one. I’d been in bad situations before, but I’d never felt the helplessness that I felt now and I wished from the bottom of my heart that I’d never taken this assignment.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
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