Watch: Exotic animals hidden in baggage smuggled from Bangkok, deported
Details about the accused and the destination are yet to be known.
Five exotic animals, smuggled from Bangkok, Thailand, through checked-in luggage, were seized on Sunday by customs officials in Chennai. A video shows a number of common dwarf mongooses and common spotted cuscus hidden in bags. The passenger has been held and the exotic animals deported to Thailand.
“On 23rd October, Chennai Customs officers seized five Dwarf and Common spotted Cuscus concealed inside check-in baggage from a passenger who arrived from Bangkok, Thailand. All the Cuscus were deported to Thailand. The passenger was arrested,” the Chennai Customs tweeted. Details about the accused and the destination are yet to be known.
Common dwarf mongooses are the smallest African carnivores. They have short limbs, long claws, a long tail, small ears, and a huge pointed head. Their soft fur comes in a wide range of hues, from reddish red to dark brown.
The common spotted cuscus, also referred to as the white cuscus, lives in the Cape York region of Australia, New Guinea, and neighbouring smaller islands. It has a round head, small, hidden ears, thick fur, and a prehensile tail to help with climbing. It is roughly the size of a domestic cat.
In a similar incident, last week more than 600 exotic species were rescued by the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) and Customs department at the Mumbai airport.
The smuggled animals were concealed in an imported consignment of live fish, including rare lizards, pythons and iguanas. More than 100 animals were found dead and several were in critical condition at the time of rescue, as they were being kept in containers used for importing and transporting fish.