(1)(a) A person shall not:
1. Possess or operate any vessel that has been equipped with tanks, bladders, drums, or other containers designed or intended to hold gasoline, or install or maintain such containers in a vessel, if such containers do not conform to federal regulations or have not been approved by the United States Coast Guard by inspection or special permit.
2. Transport any gasoline in an approved portable container when the container is in a compartment that is not ventilated in strict compliance with United States Coast Guard regulations pertaining to ventilation of compartments containing gasoline tanks.
(b) A person who violates paragraph (a) commits a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083. (2)(a) Gasoline possessed or transported in violation of this section and all containers holding such gasoline are declared to be a public nuisance. A law enforcement agency discovering gasoline possessed or transported in violation of paragraph (1)(a) shall abate the nuisance by removing the gasoline and containers from the vessel and from the waters of this state. A law enforcement agency that removes gasoline or containers pursuant to this subsection may elect to:
1. Retain the property for the agency’s own use;
2. Transfer the property to another unit of state or local government;
3. Donate the property to a charitable organization; or
4. Sell the property at public sale pursuant to s. 705.103.
(b) A law enforcement agency that seizes gasoline or containers pursuant to this subsection shall remove and reclaim, recycle, or otherwise dispose of the gasoline as soon as practicable in a safe and proper manner.
(3) All conveyances, vessels, vehicles, and other equipment described in paragraph (1)(a) or used in the commission of a violation of paragraph (1)(a), other than gasoline or containers removed as provided in subsection (2), are declared to be contraband.
(a) Upon conviction of a person arrested for a violation of paragraph (1)(a), the judge shall issue an order adjudging and ordering that all conveyances, vessels, vehicles, and other equipment used in the violation shall be forfeited to the arresting agency. The requirement for a conviction before forfeiture of property establishes to the exclusion of any reasonable doubt that the property was used in connection with the violation resulting in the conviction, and the procedures of chapter 932 do not apply to any forfeiture of property under this subsection following a conviction.
(b) In the absence of an arrest or conviction, any such conveyance, vessel, vehicle, or other equipment used in violation of paragraph (1)(a) shall be subject to seizure and forfeiture as provided by the Florida Contraband Forfeiture Act.
(c) As used in this subsection, the term “conviction” means a finding of guilt or the acceptance of a plea of guilty or nolo contendere, regardless of whether adjudication is withheld or whether imposition of sentence is withheld, deferred, or suspended.
(4) All costs incurred by the law enforcement agency in the removal of any gasoline, gasoline container, other equipment, or vessel as provided in this section shall be recoverable against the owner thereof. Any person who neglects or refuses to pay such amount shall not be issued a certificate of registration for such vessel or for any other vessel or motor vehicle until the costs have been paid.
(5) Foreign flagged vessels entering United States waters and waters of this state in compliance with 19 U.S.C. s. 1433 are exempt from this section.