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Florida Shark Draggers Charged with Animal Cruelty
By Joseph Tepper, December 13, 2017 @ 11:53 AM (EST)
Source: NY Daily News

Don’t abuse sharks—or any other ocean animal for that matter.

That’s the lesson being learned by three Florida fishermen whose criminal abuse of a shark turned into a viral video. Authorities charged Michael Wenzel, Robert Lee Benac and Spencer Heintz with two counts of aggravated animal cruelty for dragging a shark in the wake of their speedboat.

“These actions have no place in Florida, where we treasure and conserve our natural resources for everyone,” Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Chairman Bo Rivard shared in a press release.

The video first appeared in July and quickly spurred outrage throughout the dive community and the general public. The commission and the Hillsborough County State Attorney’s Office opened up an investigation to identify the animal abusers. The charges could result in a fine up to $10,000 and five years in jail according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

Read more about the investigation in this press release. The video evidence itself is difficult to watch but you can click on the image below to view it.




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