3 Keys brothers get prison for illegal lobster harvesting

Picture: Magnus Kjærgaard

KEY WEST, Fla. (AP) – Three brothers in the Florida Keys have been sent to prison, fined and ordered to forfeit a boat for illegally harvesting spiny lobster on numerous occasions.

Court records show a federal judge in Key West last week sentenced Charles, Ryan and Tyson Veach to six months each in federal prison followed by a year’s probation. Each man was also ordered to pay a $25,000 fine.

Law enforcement officials say the Veaches used artificial habitats, known as “casitas,” to lure spiny lobsters, making them easier to capture using divers. Use of such habitats is illegal.

The case involved more than 3,700 pounds of lobster worth tens of thousands of dollars.

The boat being forfeited to the government is a 32-foot center console vessel named “Super Grouper.”

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