Shark Mitigation Systems has lined up “Vladimir Putin’s favourite congressman” to endorse a US trial of its shark attack prevention system.

Republican congressman Dana Rohrabacher will today lend his support to a pilot of the Shark Mitigation Systems (ASX:SM8) early warning system in California.

Mr Rohrabacher, whose open support for all things Russian earned him the sobriquet “Putin’s favourite congressman” from US news site Politico, was in the news this week after the Wall Street Journal reported he had called the White House to push for an exoneration for Julian Assange.

Julian Assange is the Australian founder of Wikileaks, which US intelligence agencies say received Democratic National Convention (DNC) emails hacked by Russia during the 2016 presidential election.

Mr Assange is currently hiding out in the Ecuadorian embassy in London.

The congressman and local Californian officials are due to announce their support for an early warning system that would notify lifeguards of a nearby shark.

A company spokeswoman declined to elaborate on the endorsement but said Shark Mitigation Systems would later “update the market in relation to the outcome of Congressman Rohrabacher’s meeting”.

Shark Mitigation’s share price has been sliding since May. It was sitting at 3.5c on Friday morning.

Shark Mitigation has announced a spate of news this year — including the California trial. Its directors increased their stakes in the company in June and July.

Shark Mitigation Systems posted a preliminary full year loss blow-out of 204 per cent to $2.2 million after expenses rose. Revenue was $670,000.

The biggest cost increase was in personnel expenses which rose from $164,000 to $1 million. The company partnered with Bondi lifeguard and media personality Bruce ‘Hoppo’ Hopkins in May.

Cash holdings dropped by 77 per cent to $624,000.

The company has been contacted for comment.