The Washington Post

Judge does not dismiss wildlife charges against Asian grocery

View Photo Gallery: A court case involving two store grocery managers is pitting conservationists against a Virginia market that sells live animals and caters to Asian communities.

Two managers of a Asian grocery in Falls Church will likely stand trial for allegedly selling wildlife illegally after a Fairfax County judge denied their motion to have the charges dismissed Friday.

State game officers conducted an unusual undercover sting on the popular Great Wall Supermarket last spring, seizing turtles, eels, crayfish, bullfrogs and more from the seafood counter.

Two managers were charged with felonies, since the animals are classified as wildlife and are banned from sale under an anti-poaching law. The tip for the sting came from a conservationist. The charges have since been reduced to misdemeanors.

The managers believe the concern is misguided, since the animals are farm raised and not endangered. They also say the state law criminalizes the sale of fare that is traditional in Asian communities.

On Friday, defense attorney John E. Carter argued that the state law the managers were charged under is preempted by federal laws promoting acquaculture. Assistant Commonwealth Attorney J. David Gardy argued there was no such conflict.

Circuit Court Judge Marcus D. Williams sided with the state. The managers are scheduled to stand trial on April 11.


Success! Check your inbox for details. You might also like:

Please enter a valid email address

See all newsletters

Show Comments
Most Read


Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters

Your Three. Videos curated for you.
Play Videos
Deaf banjo player teaches thousands
Unconventional warfare with a side of ale
It's in the details: Five ways to enhance your kitchen makeover
Play Videos
Drawing as an act of defiance
A fighter pilot helmet with 360 degrees of sky
Border collies: A 'mouse trap' for geese on the National Mall
Play Videos
Bao: The signature dish of San Francisco
This man's job is binge-watching for Netflix
What you need to know about Planned Parenthood
Play Videos
How to save and spend money at college
Pandas, from birth to milk to mom
Europe's migrant crisis, explained