The sharks were identified as sandbar sharks.

By Aaron Katersky

He’s in deep water.

An upstate man was hit with a $5,000 fine Tuesday for illegally keeping seven live sandbar sharks in a pool in his basement — and trying to sell them online.

Joshua Seguine, 40, was given a conditional discharge in the Town of LaGrange Justice Court in Dutchess County and ordered to pay a $5,000 fine after pleading guilty to illegally possessing the sharks with the intent to sell them.

Joshua Seguine pleaded guilty to the illegal possession with intent to sell seven sandbar sharks, a protected species under New York law.Courtesy of NYSDEC

“The tide has turned for Joshua Seguine, who was convicted and held accountable for his unlawful acts,” said state Attorney General Letitia James in a statement. “Let this serve as a loud and clear message: We will not tolerate anyone who preys on protected species to line their pockets.”

The fishy situation first came onto officials’ radar in July 2017, when Seguine was busted in Georgia for driving without a license — and had five undersized sharks in a large circular tank in the back of his truck, officials said.

Sharks are pictured in a Hudson Valley area home pool, in an image posted by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation in their Twitter account. Joshua Seguine had been keeping more than half a dozen sharks and offering them for sale on the internet.

He allegedly admitted to a Georgia Department of Natural Resources investigator that he intended to sell the sharks and that he was headed home to New York, where he had more of the protected species in his house.

The information was given to the state Department of Environmental Conservation, and investigators obtained a warrant for Seguine’s property — where they found the seven live sharks swimming in the above-ground pool. Sandbar sharks can grow up to 8 feet long and are typically found in the Atlantic Ocean.

Biologists from the two aquariums assessed the sharks and transferred them to the Riverhead facility.

The sharks were subsequently moved to the New York Aquarium at Coney Island, according to the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

“I applaud the work of our environmental conservation police officers, who spearheaded the investigation that resulted in Joshua Seguine being brought to justice,” said Basil Seggos, Department of Environmental Conservation commissioner.

“It is critical that we work to protect endangered species that are taken from their natural habitats and sold for profit,” he said.

Seguine couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.

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