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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Winn-Dixie, Inc. pleaded guilty in federal court yesterday to selling undersized spiny lobster in Miami and elsewhere in 2002, according to a report in the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. The retailer was fined $200,000 and agreed to give up 6,000 pounds of spiny lobster valued at $160,000 from another shipment that's been under seizure during the investigation.
Of the $200,000 in fines, $100,000 will be paid to the The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Fisheries Enforcement Fund. The remaining fine will be paid as alternative community service to the Wildlife Foundation of Florida for the agency's Fish & Wildlife Research Institute, according to the report.
Florida law imposes size and weight limits on spiny lobster harvesting to protect the species from extinction.