Man pleads guilty to trafficking in paddlefish caviar
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — An Illinois man has pleaded guilty to illegally trafficking in paddlefish caviar.
Federal prosecutors say 41-year-old Fedor Pakhnyuk of Hinsdale, Illinois, pleaded Thursday in Kansas City.
Pakhnyuk was charged after an undercover operation in the Warsaw, Missouri, area known as the Roadhouse between 2010 and 2012. Prosecutors say state and federal undercover agents observed him catching paddlefish, processing paddlefish eggs and negotiating with fishermen to take some eggs for cleaning their paddlefish.
Pakhnyuk also suggested to covert agents that they start a partnership to sell the paddlefish caviar eggs in Chicago and Minneapolis.
Missouri law prohibits transporting paddlefish eggs taken from a paddlefish carcass. State law also prohibits the sale or purchase of paddlefish eggs, and includes several restrictions on the purchase and possession of whole paddlefish.