Idaho Supreme Court upholds fines against elk rancher

Gubernatorial candidate Rex Rammell must pay fines from 2004 elk escape

BOISE, Idaho — The Idaho Supreme Court has dealt another legal blow to Rex Rammell, a state gubernatorial hopeful who was fined by the state five years ago when he operated a domestic elk farm in eastern Idaho.

The justices affirmed Monday all but one portion of a lower court ruling that upheld state Agriculture Department fines levied against Rammell for regulatory violations discovered in 2004 at the breeding ranch portion of his operation.

Rammell, who is seeking the 2010 Republican gubernatorial nomination, challenged the fines. Rammell also argued that he was denied due process and that the state’s regulations are unreasonable.

The justices denied most of Rammell’s legal claims and upheld the fine.

But the court ruled in Rammell’s favor by clearing him of having to pay state legal fees and costs.

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