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Shark dragging suspect accepts plea deal

Hillsborough County

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – One of the men accused of dragging a shark behind a boat in the gulf has reached a plea deal.

Robert Benac, 30, was scheduled to go on trial next week if a plea deal could not be reached.

The infamous shark dragging video quickly went viral and got Robert Benac and two others in trouble with the law in 2017.

Benac is the last person of the group to not have his case resolved.

The two other men already made deals with prosecutors.

Benac’s attorneys have argued he played no part of animal cruelty against the shark and the animal was already dead.

Benac will now be charged with misdemeanor animal cruelty. He must also serve an 11-month probation, serve 10 days in jail on weekends starting this weekend and must turn himself in by 5 p.m. Friday to the Hillsborough County Jail.

Benac must also receive a psychiatric evaluation if necessary, pay a $2,500 fine, do 250 hours of community service, of which 125 must be done in an animal shelter, and will also serve time in a Manatee County jail.

His fishing license has also been revoked for three years.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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