Hedgehogs, gecko discovered in routine check at Woodlands checkpoint

The leopard gecko was placed in a plastic transparent container, which the offender kept in a pouch. -- PHOTO: ICA
The leopard gecko was placed in a plastic transparent container, which the offender kept in a pouch. -- PHOTO: ICA
The two four-toed hedgehogs were concealed in a covered shoe box, which was placed in an orange plastic bag. -- PHOTO: ICA
The two four-toed hedgehogs were concealed in a covered shoe box, which was placed in an orange plastic bag. -- PHOTO: ICA

SINGAPORE - A routine check on a Singapore-registered taxi at Woodlands Checkpoint uncovered several unusual passengers on Feb 6.

Two hedgehogs and a gecko were found among the belongings of a Malaysian passenger, the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority and Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA) said in a joint statement on Wednesday (Feb 25).

The hedgehogs were hidden inside a shoe box while the gecko had been placed in a small plastic container in the 26-year-old passenger's white zip pouch.

He and the animals were handed over to AVA for investigations. The driver was not implicated.

AVA fined the offender $1,500 for the illegal import of animals. The animals were taken to the Singapore Zoo.

AVA also reminded travellers not to bring live animals, birds and insects into Singapore without a proper permit.

andreang@sph.com.sg