Three men charged in shark dragging video

Last Updated: Tuesday, December 12, 2017, 10:16 PM EST

Three individuals have been charged in connection to video where a shark was dragged behind a boat at high speed.

Michael Wenzel, 21; Robert Lee Benac, 28; and Spencer Heintz, 23, are being charged with two felony counts of aggravated animal cruelty. Wenzel and Benac are also being charged with illegal method of take.

The charges came from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and Hillsborough County State Attorney’s Office, who conducted a four-month long investigation of the video and other social media posts to identify suspects.

“As we’ve said since this video and other images came to light, these actions have no place in Florida, where we treasure and conserve our natural resources for everyone,” said FWC Commission Chairman Bo Rivard in a news release.

“It is our hope these charges will send a clear message to others that this kind of behavior involving our fish and wildlife will not be tolerated,” Rivard also added.