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Santa Monica Chef Busted For Selling Whale Sushi Faces 67 Years In Prison

Whales are friends, not food.

At least, that’s the premise behind the Marine Mammal Protection Act, prohibiting the import and sale of endangered whale meat in the United States. So when the 2010 Oscar-winning documentary The Cove busted restaurant The Hump at the Santa Monica Airport for illegally selling Sei whale sushi, filmmakers returned with federal agents to slap charges on the owners with a camera crew in tow.

Head chef Kiyoshiro Yamamoto purchased the meat labeled “fatty tuna” on invoices from a Japanese national named Ginichi Ohira. Yamimoto now faces 67 years in prison for allowing the arrangement to continue for three years.

To recap: In Russia, murdering and dismembering your wife using your chef skills earns you 15 years in prison; selling illegal mammal sushi in The States earns you close to seven decades.

[LA Times h/t GrubStreet]

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