Dean Martin

'Greatest living pool cue maker' sentenced after pleading guilty to helping smuggle elephant ivory

'Greatest living pool cue maker' sentenced after pleading guilty to helping smuggle elephant ivory

For decades, Ernie Gutierrez has been at the vanguard of the high-priced market of bespoke pool cues.

Rivals have emulated his ornate, ivory-laden designs. Customers from around the world have flocked to his North Hollywood shop, Ginacue.

But on Monday, Gutierrez found himself before a federal judge in downtown Los Angeles, facing his fate for involvement in what prosecutors described as the illegal ivory trade.

For unlawfully helping two customers export ivory to Taiwan, U.S. District Judge John F. Walter imposed a two-year probation term on Gutierrez, 75, including four months of home confinement.

The case against Gutierrez apparently began in April,...

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