A California man has been sentenced to 45 days in prison, and ordered to pay a $2000 fine for smuggling more than 50 Clipperton angelfish (Holacanthus limbaughi) for the aquarium trade.
Steven Robinson (58) from Hayward was accused of capturing the angelfish, which is a rare species in the hobby commanding up to $10,000 per fish in some markets. It only comes from the tiny uninhabited Clipperton Island, which lies southwest of Mexico and is under French authority. Fishing in the area requires permission from the French government.
Robinson imported the fish into the US, claiming they were a different species.
He pleaded guilty and is scheduled to begin serving his sentence at the end of January.
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