A Czech national man could be sentenced to 10 years in prison after X-ray technicians at an Argentinian airport noticed “organic substances moving inside” his suitcase. What were those substances? 247 live animals, including poisonous snakes and endangered reptiles, that the man planned to take on board a transatlantic flight.
AFP reports the man, 51-year-old Karel Abelovsky, was on his way to Madrid when airport personnel stopped him to inspect his bag:
“When they opened the bag, they found more than 200 reptiles and mollusks, among them nine species of poisonous snakes including South American pitvipers, packed in clear plastic containers.
There were also 15 venomous vipers, including two yararas — which can measure up to 1.50 meters (five feet) — and several young boas.”
The incident occurred on December 7 but has come to media recently as Abelovsky has been charged with attempted smuggling. Two of the animals in his bag were found dead and AFP reports that others could have suffered the same fate due to lack of oxygen in the suitcase.
The case brings to mind the recent Samuel L. Jackson Action/Horror/Inadvertent Comedy, Snakes on a Plane: