MIAMI -- A Florida man must pay a $250,000 fine after pleading guilty to illegally shipping spiny lobsters obtained to China.
A federal judge last week ordered 60-year-old Eric Burman of Boca Raton to serve three years' probation. Burman pleaded guilty to conspiracy to violate the federal Lacey Act, which combats illegal trafficking in wildlife, plants and the like.
Court documents show that Burman obtained the live spiny lobsters from the Florida Keys and shipped them to Hong Kong from his business in Pompano Beach. Prosecutors say none of the proper permits and paperwork was filled out for the lobsters. The fine will be paid into a federal fishery conservation fund.