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Karnataka: Passenger from Bangkok arrested with 10 yellow anacondas at Bengaluru airport (See PHOTOS)

Customs authorities at Bengaluru's Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) made a significant bust on Monday, apprehending a passenger for attempting to smuggle as many as 10 yellow anacondas hidden within his checked-in luggage.

Karnataka Passenger from Bangkok arrested with 10 yellow anacondas at Bengaluru airport (See PHOTOS) gcw
First Published Apr 23, 2024, 2:06 PM IST

A passenger was arrested at Bengaluru's Kempegowda International Airport for attempting to smuggle 10 yellow anacondas. The reptiles were concealed in his check-in baggage. The Bengaluru Customs department stated in a post on X that the traveler, who had come from Bangkok, had been arrested and taken into custody by the officers.

"#Indiancustomsatwork Bengaluru Air #Customs intercepted attempt to smuggle 10 yellow Anacondas concealed in a checked-in bag of a pax arriving from Bangkok. Pax arrested and investigation is underway. Wildlife trafficking will not be tolerated. #CITES #WildlifeProtection," the X post read.

The yellow anaconda is a riverine species found close to water bodies. Typically, yellow anacondas may be found in northern Uruguay, northeastern Argentina, Bolivia, Paraguay, and Brazil. Wildlife trafficking and trading are prohibited by law in India. 

It is illegal to trade in wildlife as per Indian laws, and the Customs Act, 1962 has many sections on combatting wildlife trafficking.

Following a tip, the customs officials searched the man's luggage and discovered alligators, chameleons, pythons, iguanas, and turtles hidden within trolley bags. Some of the animals found in the man's luggage were listed in the appendices of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).

In a similar incident, Bengaluru customs officials had also confiscated 72 snakes and six monkeys from a baggage, also from a Bangkok flight. The snakes included 55 ball pythons and 17 king cobras, all of which were alive in the baggage. Sadly, the six capuchin monkeys were all dead. The incident occurred in September last year.

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