Taking a pet on a trip is one thing but trying to smuggle animals on a plane is just asking for trouble. Over 100 live animals were discovered in two women’s luggage at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport. The pair were arrested by Thai officials and accused of smuggling the live animals.
Authorities from Thailand’s Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation said the wild animals were detected following an x-ray inspection of the luggage. The wildlife officials were called to the scene and identified two white porcupines, two armadillos, 35 turtles, 50 lizards and 20 snakes in the two pieces of luggage.
Nithya Raja and Zakia Sulthana Ebrahim were due to board a flight to Chennai, a city in India. The women were charged with violating the Wildlife Conservation and Protection Act of 2019, the Animal Disease Act of 2015 and the Customs Act of 2017.
Chennai Internation Airport has become known as a hotspot for wildlife smugglers. They have recorded the highest number of wildlife seizure incidents in India. According to a report by TRAFFIC, a wildlife trade monitoring agency, more than 70,000 native and exotic wild animals — including their body parts or derivatives — were discovered in 140 seizures at 18 Indian airports between 2011 and 2020.