Man faces 450 years in prison for poaching Venus Flytraps

Archie Lee Williams, Jr. (41) of Brunswick County, North Carolina, has been charged with 73 felony counts of taking 216 Venus Flytrap plants. He could face 450 years in prison and is being held on a $750,000 bond.

From Port City Daily:

The tiny carnivorous plant is listed as a "vulnerable" species on the state's protected plants list. Environmentalists and officers tasked with protecting the plant from poachers cited difficulty in the past with identifying whether the plants were grown or poached.

According to the Wildlife Resources Commission (WRC), Williams was caught on camera. He was later apprehended with over 200 plants and digging tools. Williams admitted to a WRC officer that he habitually poaches Venus Flytraps from multiple locations around the area.

Interestingly, while it is illegal to take Venus Flytraps from public land, developers can destroy the plants with impunity.

Image of Venus Flytrap: Kuttelvaserova Stuchelova/Shutterstock