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Florida men charged with poaching protected sea turtle eggs

March 12, 2021 GMT

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Two Florida men have been sentenced to federal prison for stealing 93 protected sea turtle eggs.

Carl Lawrence Cobb, 65, received nine months earlier this week in West Palm Beach federal court, according to court records. Bruce Wayne Bivins, 65, received seven months last month. Both pleaded guilty to violating the Endangered Species Act, a federal law designed, in part, to protect imperiled species.

According to a criminal complaint, Cobb dropped Bivins off at the Singer Island Beach, just north of Palm Beach, one night last May. Bivins found a sea turtle nest, removed 93 eggs and then called Cobb for a pick-up, officials said. Officers with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission reported seeing the poaching and stopped Cobb’s truck. The eggs were recovered and relocated by marine biologists, officials said.

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Investigators said the men had been planning to sell the eggs.