TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (NBC News) – Three Florida men have been charged in connection with a July video showing a shark being dragged behind a boat at high speeds.
According to Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), Michael Wenzel, 21, Robert Lee Benac, III, 28, and Spencer Heintz, 23, each face two felony counts of aggravated animal cruelty – a third-degree felony.
Wenzel and Benac also face a misdemeanor count of illegal method of take for the shark.
The video, which surfaced earlier this year, allegedly shows three men watching as a shark is being dragged behind their boat at a high speed.
It is unclear who filmed the video.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said it examined the video and other social media images when investigating the case.
Florida Gov. Rick Scott tweeted on Tuesday, saying he was “proud of the hard work” the FWC took to find those responsible for the video.
I was outraged by the sickening video of a shark being horribly abused earlier this year, and I am proud of the hard work of @MyFWC law enforcement during this investigation. https://t.co/KgT9EyiUV6 https://t.co/HfxGvpa5r8
— Rick Scott (@FLGovScott) December 13, 2017