Saturday, Apr 25, 2015Saturday, Apr 25, 2015

Hong Kong customs in $160 million endangered species bust

Published on Jan 7, 2013 7:48 PM

HONG KONG - Hong Kong customs officers said on Monday they had seized a huge haul of endangered seahorses and crocodile meat being smuggled into the city in a container of exotic foods worth more than US$1 million (S$160 million).

The 579 kilos of dried crocodile meat and 311 kilos of dried seahorses were hidden in a lorry container marked "deer antlers", along with birds' nests, dried deer tails and dried geckos, worth a total of US$1.03 million.

The 52-year-old driver of the lorry, from Hong Kong, was arrested after customs officials intercepted the truck at the Lok Ma Chau control point near the border with mainland China on Saturday, the customs department said in a statement.

"Among the seizures, the dried crocodylia meat and dried seahorses were endangered species," the statement added.

Enjoy 2 weeks of unlimited digital access to The Straits Times. Get your free access now!