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NHL defenceman accused of illegal bear hunting to enter plea in Vancouver @NHLdotcom

VANCOUVER - An NHL player accused of illegally shooting a grizzly bear is expected to enter a plea in a Vancouver court on Friday after several adjournments in the case.

Clayton Stoner of the Anaheim Ducks faces five charges for a hunt in 2013 on British Columbia's central coast.

Wildlife groups and First Nations leaders have been outraged that Stoner killed the bear, named Cheeky.

Protesters held signs and shouted slogans at a recent hockey game in Anaheim, calling for the defenceman to be suspended.

He has become the focus of a trophy hunting debate after photos published in a Vancouver newspaper two years ago showed him holding a bear's severed head.

Charges against Stoner, who hasn't lived in his Vancouver Island hometown for years, include knowingly making a false statement to obtain a hunting licence.

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