AWENDAW, S.C. – A man has been charged with branding sharks like cattle off the South Carolina coast.
News outlets cite South Carolina Natural Resources officials who say a 56-year-old Awendaw man was charged with illegal tagging of a saltwater fish last week. The misdemeanor can net a fine of up to $200.
Officials say they were alerted about the brandings last month, as anglers off the South Carolina coast began catching sharks with a symbol that looked like a cursive letter burned just below their dorsal fins.
Officials say they also saw photos of such sharks circulating on social media.
The Post and Courier reports the brands could have been made with a propane torch or dry ice.
The newspaper reports the suspect was "cooperative" with authorities.