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NY man pleads guilty to illegal possession of 7 live sharks

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He’s in deep water.

An upstate man was sentenced Tuesday for illegally possessing seven live sandbar sharks in an above-ground pool in his home.

Joshua Seguine, 40, was given a conditional discharge in the Town of LaGrange Justice Court in Dutchess County and ordered to pay a $5,000 fine after pleading guilty to illegally possessing the sharks with the intent to sell them.

“The tide has turned for Joshua Seguine, who was convicted and held accountable for his unlawful acts,” said state Attorney General Letitia James in a statement. “Let this serve as a loud and clear message: We will not tolerate anyone who preys on protected species to line their pockets.”

Seguine first came on the radar of the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) in July 2017, when he was busted in Georgia for driving without a license — and hauling five undersized sharks in a large circular tank in the back of his truck, officials said.

New York State police investigating the pool containing seven sharks.
New York State police investigating the pool containing seven sharks.
Courtesy of NYSDEC

He allegedly admitted to Department of Natural Resources Investigator John Evans that he intended to sell the sharks and that he was headed home to New York, where he had more of the protected species in his house. Evans relayed the information to the DEC, and investigators obtained a warrant for Seguine’s property, where they found seven live sharks swimming in the above-ground basement pool. Sandbar sharks can grow up to 8 feet long and are found in the Atlantic Ocean.

One of the sharks swimming in the pool.
One of the sharks swimming in the pool.
Courtesy of NYSDEC

Authorities also found two dead leopard sharks, one dead hammerhead shark and the snout of a smalltooth sawfish — an endangered species.

The surviving sharks were transferred to the New York Aquarium at Coney Island.

Joshua Seguine was given a conditional discharge in the Town of LaGrange Justice Court in Dutchess County and ordered to pay a $5,000 fine.
Joshua Seguine was given a conditional discharge in the Town of LaGrange Justice Court in Dutchess County and ordered to pay a $5,000 fine.
Courtesy of NYSDEC

Seguine used the business name Aquatic Apex Life LLC to traffick sharks on the website MonsterFishKeepers.com, officials said.

“It is critical we work to protect endangered species that are taken from their natural habitats and sold for profit,” said DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos.

Seguine used the business name Aquatic Apex Life LLC to traffick sharks on the website MonsterFishKeepers.com, officials said.
Seguine used the business name Aquatic Apex Life LLC to traffick sharks on the website MonsterFishKeepers.com, officials said.
Courtesy of NYSDEC

Seguine couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.

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