Seven sandbar sharks that were living at New York man’s above-ground pool were relocated to the New York Aquarium at Coney Island.
Joshua Seguine, 40, is now facing a $5,000 fine for illegal possession with intent to sell seven sandbar sharks, according to a statement from state Attorney General Letitia James.
Sandbar sharks are a protected species under New York law and illegal to possess in the state without a special license.
He was sentenced to a conditional discharge in Town of LaGrange Justice Court in New York this week, meaning he was released without imprisonment or probation, but subject to court-determined conditions.
“The tide has turned for Joshua Seguine, who was convicted and held accountable for his unlawful acts,” James said. “We will not tolerate anyone who preys on protected species to line their pockets.”
Seguine had been on the Department of Environmental Conservation’s (DEC) radar since 2017 when he was arrested in Georgia for driving without a license and holding a tank of five undersized sharks in the back of his truck.
Seguine told a Department of Natural Resources investigator that he was transporting the sharks to New York state and intended to sell them. He also admitted to keeping more live sharks at his home in New York.
Upon investigation, it was discovered that Seguine had been conducting business under the name Aquatic Apex and offering sharks for sale on the website MonsterFishKeepers.com.
DEC officers searched Seguine’s home, finding an above-ground pool that contained seven live sandbar sharks.
Two dead leopard sharks, a dead hammerhead shark, and the snout of a smalltooth sawfish were also found in the search.
The biologists who accompanied officers on the search assessed the living sharks, which were eventually transferred to the New York Aquarium.