(a) Any person, his aiders, abettors, and counsellors, who willfully, negligently, recklessly, wrongfully, or maliciously enters upon lands or premises of another without written permission of the owner of the lands or premises, in order to cut, burn, or otherwise injure or destroy, or cause to be cut, burned, or otherwise injured, or destroyed, any merchantable trees or timber on the land is liable to the party injured or aggrieved in an amount triple the value of the trees or timber cut, burned, or otherwise injured or destroyed, plus the costs of any surveys, appraisals, attorney fees, or court fees in connection with the case. The damages are recoverable in a civil action, as in any other case.
(b) At the request of a law enforcement officer, a person on the lands and premises of another engaged in any act specified in subsection (a) of this section shall display the written permission of the owner.
(c) Notwithstanding the provisions of this section, the following shall obtain the permission of an owner before engaging in any act specified in subsection (a) of this section, but are not required to obtain the permission in writing or to display the written permission as provided in subsection (b) of this section:
(1) A public service company, as defined in § 1-101 of the Public Utilities Article ; and
(2) An employee of the Department of Public Works or roads board of any county or municipality, or the State Highway Administration, performing roadside maintenance.
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