BANGOR — A 40-year-old Dover-Foxcroft man has been sentenced to six months in prison for illegally catching and selling endangered Atlantic salmon from the Piscataquis River.

Mark Cox was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Bangor.

Cox pleaded guilty in February to violating the Lacey Act, which prohibits the taking or selling of an endangered species.

According to the Bangor Daily News, Cox told investigators that he caught the fish in August 2009 for sport, but that his dire financial situation led him to sell the catch when he was approached by an undercover agent.

Judge John Woodcock said he was “distraught” that Cox went after an endangered species. He said society has managed to drive salmon away and that the fish Cox caught were survivors.