Disqualified angler found guilty

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The crewmember who cost his fishing team a $1 million prize earlier this year was found guilty in North Carolina of fishing without a license.

Peter Wann was ordered to pay $133 in court costs and he received a 10-day prison sentence suspended for 12 months of probation, the website Examiner.com reported.

According to the Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament's official website, the Hatteras, N.C.-based boat Citation was disqualified by the tournament's board of directors despite landing what would have been a tournament record 883-pound blue marlin and thinking they had won $1 million.

Andy Thomasson of Richmond caught the marlin June 14, the first day of the tournament. But tournament organizers were able to confirm that Wann, of Alexandria, had purchased his fishing license while on his way to the weigh station after the fish was caught.

Wann failed a polygraph test about the incident and North Carolina officials cited him for fishing without a license. Tournament directors spent three days consulting with the state's attorney general and other state officials before deciding to withhold the money.

The crew of the Citation has filed a lawsuit in Dare County Superior Court alleging breach of contract. An injunction is in place that prohibits awarding the billfish prize money until the case is settled, the website reported.

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