Student Arrested for Illegal Algae: DNews Nugget

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Student Arrested for Illegal Algae: A student in New Zealand was arrested and tried for importing illegal fish tank algae, reports OneNews.

The 20-year-old Jasmine Maxwell was caught importing marimo moss balls, likely from Iceland, Scotland, Japan or Estonia. The balls are a type of algae popular in fish tanks, but they are prohibited in New Zealand because if they get into the natural waterways they could destroy fish populations.

The authorities told OneNews, “The worst case scenario would be for the moss ball to become widespread and highly abundant in some areas… It could force certain species of native and commercial species of fish and eels out as well.”

Maxwell was importing them and then selling the moss balls online. At one point customs officers told her she could be prosecuted, but she continued anyway. She “narrowly avoided serving prison time,” said the report. via OneNews

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