|Load of Croc, Smuggler Stashes 70 Live Animals in Luggage|
A 28-year-old man was arrested for allegedly smuggling 70 live animals in his luggage. Custom officials at the O.R. Tambo International Airport (ORTIA) near Johannesburg, discovered the animals hidden inside plastic tubs and bags.
According to reports, the smuggled animals included snakes, spiders, scorpions, lizards, frogs and eight Caiman crocodiles. Some of the animals are endangered species. After initial inspection, most of the animals appeared to be in “ok” condition. All of the confiscated animals were transported to South Africa’s National Zoo where they will be quarantined for about a month to monitor their health and prevent the spread of disease.
Officials believe the suspect was going to sell the animals on the black market. Illegal wildlife trafficking is big business and is second only to drug trafficking in Africa.
The unnamed suspect appeared in court last week and was charged with contravening the Environmental Act. If convicted, he faces possible fines or jail time.
Source: GO Media - Written by Jace Shoemaker-Galloway - Photos: Snake Care SMC Flickr