Clarkstown Man Admits Selling $70K In Elephant Ivory Pool Cues, DA Says

A Hudson Valley man has been convicted for his part in the illegal commercialization of elephant ivory worth more than $70,000.

Some of the pool cues made from elephant ivory seized. 

Some of the pool cues made from elephant ivory seized. 

Photo Credit: Department of Environmental Conservation

Rockland County resident Kenneth Kerner, age 59, of Clarkstown, was convicted on Thursday, Feb. 22 after pleading guilty to the crime on Thursday, Feb. 8, said the New State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and New York County District Attorney’s Office.

Kerner, who was sentenced to five years probation, 200 hours of community service, and an obligation to donate $10,000 to a wildlife organization was caught as part of an investigation that began in 2020 into the use of ivory for making pool cues, the DA's Office said. 

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg said, “Kenneth Kerner illegally sold and offered for sale $70,000 in pool cues manufactured from elephant ivory. I thank our law enforcement partners for their partnership in this case.”

Investigators found the pool cues had asking prices as high as $45,000 and were offered for sale on social media sites.

Undercover investigators contacted the seller and arranged an in-person buy in September 2020. The seller offered three ivory cues for sale, one of them for $15,000. Once the investigator cleared the sale, officers with the District Attorney’s Office arrested the seller.

Wild elephant populations worldwide number fewer than 500,000 and are listed as endangered species. New York’s Environmental Conservation Law makes the sale of ivory without a permit illegal, officials said. 

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