Central City man arrested for taking 134 ginseng plants - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Central City man arrested for taking 134 ginseng plants

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CENTRAL CITY (AP) - A Central City man is charged with illegally taking 134 ginseng plants from a state preserve.

Allan W. Gates of Central City is facing charges related to the plants' theft and is set to appear in Dubuque District Court next month. The district court clerk's office says their records don't show an attorney for Gates.

Conservation officers say they saw Gates last month carrying a bag and shovel while walking out from the White Pine Hollow State Preserve.

According to a criminal complaint, Gates told officers he was out for a walk. The complaint says he allegedly later admitted to digging up the ginseng. Officers found he had 134 plants in his bag.

The Dubuque Telegraph Herald reports the plant has significant value and is typically sold in Asia, where it's used as a natural medicine.

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