Coast Guard seizes 40 sharks illegally caught off Texas coast

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Officials with the U.S. Coast Guard seized 40 sharks that were illegally caught off the southern Texas coast on Tuesday.

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According to a news release, Coast Guard officials were notified by U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents that four men were fishing illegally approximately seven miles north of the maritime boundary line near the U.S-Mexico border.

The men were aboard a lancha boat -- a slender vessel typically used to transport illegal drugs and fish to the U.S., KSAT-TV reported. The boat measures approximately 20 to 30 feet long and has one outboard motor, KTRK-TV reported. The vessel can travel up to 30 mph, according to the television station.

The four men were detained and transferred to border agents for processing. The sharks and the illegal fishing equipment also were seized, the Coast Guard said in its release.

The boundary for state waters is nine miles offshore and the boundary for international waters is 200 miles offshore, according to KSAT.