KEY WEST (CBSMiami/AP) — Two Florida Keys men have been sentenced to prison time after pleading guilty to illegal trafficking in wildlife including sharks, tropical fish and sea fans.
A federal judge in Key West sentenced 51-year-old Eric Pedersen to two years in prison and a $10,000 fine. A sentence of one year and a day was imposed on 43-year-old Serdan Ercan, along with a $6,000 fine.READ MORE: Davie Domestic Dispute Led To Police Involved Shooting
Court documents show they sold wildlife illegally around the country from their company on Grassy Key, known as Key Marine Inc. Federal agents covertly recorded the men’s harvesting activities and marked items so they could be traced after sale around the country.READ MORE: Monroe Co. Has New Re-Entry Stickers In Case Of Checkpoints
Key Marine is now defunct.
The case is one of several stemming from a long-term Keys wildlife trafficking investigation called Operation Rock Bottom.MORE NEWS: 'The ACA Is Here To Stay': Florida Lawmakers React To Supreme Court Decision Saving Obamacare
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