James Travis Johnson of Travis Johnson Logging is accused of failing to pay for $24,000 of timber in Vernon Parish, according to the Louisiana Department of Agriculture & Forestry (LDAF).
Johnson, of Vernon Parish, was charged with one count of Harvest of Forest Products/Failure to Remit Payment on Nov. 16, according to an LDAF press release. He was released on $20,000 bond.
LDAF agents received a complaint form a Vernon Parish landowner that no payment for timber had been made. According to LDAF, the landowner said Travis Johnson Logging was hired to cut timber and pay the proceeds from the sale. After the timber was cut, "no records or payment had been received, and the landowner stated they were never paid for the timber." Johnson was contacted several times, the landowner told LDAF, but would make a promise to pay the landowner and not show up.
According to LDAF, the landowner was owed $24,407 for the timber.
“Timber theft can take a variety of forms — from harvesting timber without the landowner’s knowledge or consent to entering into a formal agreement and not paying them the full purchase price,” said LDAF Commissioner Mike Strain. “LDAF agents are committed to helping landowners get paid for their timber in cases like this.”
LDAF reminds everyone that all persons accused of any crime are considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
The public is urged to report any forestry-related crimes to the LDAF Office of Forestry at 225-925-4500 or the LDAF 24-hr hotline at 1-855-452-5323.