- A man was found guilty this week of keeping seven sandbar sharks in a pool in his New York basement.
- Officials were tipped off after he was arrested in Georgia with five sharks in the back of his truck.
- "We will not tolerate anyone who preys on protected species," the state attorney general said.
- For more stories visit Business Insider.
A man was found guilty this week of keeping sharks in an above-ground 15-foot pool in the basement of his home in New York state with the intent to sell them.
Authorities discovered seven sandbar sharks at the home of Joshua Seguine, 40, in 2017, shortly after he was arrested in Georgia for driving without a license – and carrying five small sharks in the back of his truck, according to a statement from the attorney general's office.
Seguine admitted he planned to sell the sharks, prompting an investigation by the New York Department of Environmental Conservation, which revealed he owned a business named Aquatic Apex Life L.L.C. and listed sharks for sale on a website called MonsterFishKeepers.com.
Officials from the DEC searched his home and found the sandbar sharks, a protected species under New York state law. They also discovered two dead leopard sharks, one dead hammerhead shark, and the snout of a smalltooth sawfish, an endangered species.
The living sharks were transferred from Seguine's basement, and have now found a home at the New York Aquarium at Coney Island.
Seguine pleaded guilty this week to the charge of illegal possession of the sharks with intent to sell, and is facing a $5,000 (R73,105) fine, according to a statement from New York Attorney General Letitia James.
"The tide has turned for Joshua Seguine, who was convicted and held accountable for his unlawful acts," James said. "Let this serve as a loud and clear message: We will not tolerate anyone who preys on protected species to line their pockets."
It is legal to own sharks, though not protected species, according to The New York Times. Sharks are often coveted by celebrities and professional athletes, among others, which supports an underground market for exotic fish, The Times reported.
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