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MS exec's hunting trip: illegally chased and shot 4 antelopes

Kempin drops $6k after nine hunting violations in Montana

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John Lettice

Microsoft OEM chief Joachim Kempin was guilty of nine charges of illegal hunting, and far from being a "noted gunslinger," as we suggested in our story yesterday, he seems to have been hunting without a licence, in Montana. The Kempin incident was reported on MSNBC (relation) on 17th December, but that story has subsequently been deleted from MSNBC's system.

As usual, however, Register readers have come up trumps. The traces we found of the original MSNBC story yesterday* suggested Kempin had been charged for hunting from a vehicle. The full text of the story (thanks, Reader A) however goes on to say Kempin was "charged with harassing wildlife from a motor vehicle and other hunting violations in Montana...

"The alleged incidents occurred in Powder River and Beaverhead counties, where Kempin was accused of chasing antelope with his motor vehicle and killed at least four animals." He was also charged with hunting without a valid licence and with using licence tags belonging to his wife, and a juvenile. His wife was charged with illegally transferring the tags to Kempin.

The Kempins paid fines of $5,920, and Joachim told the New Tribune of Tacoma that he was paying up because he made a mistake which he deeply regretted. The fines were actually paid via the forfeiture of bail, which we take to mean that Joachim, star of the antitrust trial, felt that he'd had quite enough exposure in court this year already.

But he has at least come in for some seriously unfavourable publicity in Tacoma. A letter to the editor of the Tribune (thanks, Reader B) notes that "Hunters throughout the country put a lot of effort in portraying a positive image.

"It's people like Joachim Kempin the law-abiding hunters have to thank for being denied access to hunting on private property. This Microsoft executive with his millions could go out and book a guided trip for less than he paid in fines. He stated that he was going to pay the fines because he made a mistake and regretted it. I'm sure the only reason that he regrets it is that he was caught.

"Every ethical hunter out there knows that this type of hunting is illegal; it was no mistake. Not only did he use his wife's tag, he had the nerve to use the tags of his juvenile son and an acquaintance to tag two other animals. Is he teaching his son ethical hunting? I wonder if he can look at himself in the mirror and feel that he is a good role model." Joachim in his day job is also of course a role model, in his capacity as a member of Microsoft's Business Leadership Team.

Coming soon: Yesterday we touched on Bill Gates' interesting relationship with the Albuquerque police department back in the 70s. We expect more info on this any time now (thanks in anticipation, Reader C), so keep tuning in. And if you've ever run into a top IT industry exec in a cell somewhere, do let us know - we're getting kind of interested in this stuff... ®

* It's still not clear to us why the original MSNBC story disappeared, but the subsequent disappearance of its citation from the index is most likely to have been caused by a routine automated re-index, rather than manual intervention.

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