A San Jose man was arraigned this week on charges of violating the Endangered Species Act by allegedly transporting endangered fish, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Ryan Lopez Bernardez, 39, was indicted by a grand jury in October following an investigation by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service but the indictment was not unsealed until his arrest on Friday and arraignment on Monday, federal prosecutors said.
Bernardez is charged with transporting and selling two endangered Asian arowana fish, also known as Asian bonytongue. Bernardez made his first court appearance Monday and is currently out of custody on $100,000 bail. He is scheduled to return to court Thursday at 1:30 p.m. for a detention hearing. If convicted, Bernardez faces a maximum possible sentence of five years and a fine of $250,000, prosecutors said.
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