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‘VenomMan20’ Guilty of Possessing Illegal, Venomous Snakes

Police Handle Oyster and Striped Bass Violations

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A Washington County man known on social media as “VenomMan20” was found guilty Tuesday on two counts of illegal possession of venomous snakes.

Brandon Joseph Boyles, 29, of Cascade, was prohibited from owning “dangerous animals” in Maryland and was required to perform 20 hours of community service by District Judge Marc G. Rasinsky. Boyles also received one year of unsupervised probation.

Billing himself as “VenomMan20” on YouTube, Boyles had six Western diamondback rattlesnakes, one seven-foot-long forest cobra, one Cape Coral cobra and two boomslang snakes when Maryland Natural Resources Police officers searched his apartment Feb. 22. Officers found snakes housed in improperly secured plastic bins and two dead snakes in a freezer. The snakes lacked fresh water and one bin was filthy. All of the snakes are potentially fatal to humans.

Boyles took five venomous snakes, three alligators and a crocodile, which he owned, when he left his job at Catoctin Wildlife Preserve and Zoo in September 2017, investigators determined. It was legal for Boyles to keep the snakes at the zoo, which has a permit to house them. However, Boyles did not have a permit to have them at home.

Boyles posted videos to YouTube in 2016 and 2017, showing him uncrating venomous snakes in his apartment. Those snakes included a Gaboon viper, a monocled cobra and an Indo-Chinese spitting cobra.

The crocodile, alligators and a rattlesnake were transferred last year to the Maryland Reptile Conservation Center in Dickerson.

An additional 21 charges of illegal possession, animal cruelty and reckless endangerment were dismissed by Judge Rasinsky as part of a plea agreement.

A Queen Anne’s County man was charged with illegally harvesting oysters May 2 after an officer stopped his boat at the mouth of the Magothy River for an inspection.

Ian Noah Horney, 41, of Grasonville, received a citation for having 42 untagged bushels of oysters taken from a leased area on board. Horney must appear in Anne Arundel County District Court for a hearing. The maximum fine is $1,000.

Two men were charged with illegal fishing for striped bass just after midnight May 2 while on Fishing Creek Bridge in Dorchester County.

Officers watched Jose German Parada Gonzalez, 31, of Gaithersburg, and Kevin Majano Pudencio, 20, of Walkersville, catch and hide 59 striped bass. Each man received three citations: possessing undersized striped bass, possessing striped bass in a restricted area and keeping striped bass over the daily limit.

They are scheduled to be in Dorchester County District Court July 18. Each charge carries a maximum fine of $1,500.

Three Prince George’s County men are scheduled to appear in Dorchester County District Court June 27 to answer charges that they caught and kept more than 100 striped bass.

Luis Alberto Diaz Ortiz, 31, Carlos Youany Avalos Moreno, 34, and Castillo Ernesto, 35, all of Hyattsville, were stopped near Fishing Creek Bridge April 28 after officers on surveillance saw them catching and keeping fish and subsequently hiding them. They each received three citations: possessing 118 undersized striped bass, possessing 114 striped bass over the daily limit, and catching striped bass in a prohibited area. Each charge carries a maximum fine of $1,500.