Firefighter faces jail for illegal lobster harvest

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

KEY WEST, Fla. (AP) - A Key West jury has found a firefighter
guilty of federal conspiracy charges in an illegal harvest of spiny lobsters.

Michael Delph and five others were caught with 922 spiny
lobsters aboard their boat when they returned to Cudjoe Key in
August. The daily boat limit for spiny lobsters is 250.

Authorities say the lobsters were harvested illegally from
protected waters in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary.

The other five boaters pleaded guilty.

Delph's attorney argued Wednesday that the conviction should be
a misdemeanor because the indictment doesn't show the value of the
lobsters, a key element for a felony conviction.

The 39-year-old Key West firefighter is free on bond awaiting

He faces up to five years in prison.

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