Flyer from Bangkok caught with 10 yellow anacondas

He has been booked for trafficking wildlife and the anacondas have been transported back to Thailand.
One of the yellow anacondas that was recovered by the Customs at Kempegowda International Airport
One of the yellow anacondas that was recovered by the Customs at Kempegowda International Airport Photo | Express

BENGALURU: A 56-year-old coffee trader from Sakleshpur flying into Bengaluru from Bangkok in a Thai Air Asia flight was caught on Saturday night by the Customs officials for smuggling 10 baby yellow anacondas in his suitcase. Three of the reptiles were found dead.

The flyer has been booked for trafficking wildlife and the anacondas have been transported back to Thailand. He had reached Kempegowda International Airport on Flight No. FD-137 at 10.44 pm on April 20.

The value of a baby yellow anaconda in the market ranges between Rs 40,000 and Rs 1 lakh. They measured between 2 ft and 2.5 ft and were wrapped in cotton bags and placed in the checked-in baggage.

“The person was tempted by the prospect of making easy money. Someone at the Bangkok airport has approached him and promised Rs 20,000 if he handed over the suitcase to someone in Bengaluru. He agreed to do it. This individual had visited Bangkok as a tourist,” a Customs official said.

Airport Customs also received intelligence input about the smuggling. They also detected the snakes while scanning of the baggage, the source said.

“Based on our interaction with wildlife traffickers in the past, it is clear that this is the first time he has been indulging in such an act,” the source added. Snake expert Vattam Aditya told TNIE, “These anacondas appear to be around two months old. The adult ones grow up to 16 ft-18 ft and is impossible to smuggle them. The yellow anaconda is one of the three kinds found. Since they were babies, they could be smuggled easily.”

The anaconda is a native species of South America and Bangkok is the hub for wildlife smuggling in Asia, he added.

The Customs official added, “In the present case, the seized exotic animals are prohibited for import and attract the provisions of Section 104 (4) (a) of the Customs Act 1962 and Section 51 of the Wildlife Protection Act 1972.”

Man dies after dental visit, kin protest with body at police station

Bengaluru: Relatives of a deceased 55-year-old man protested keeping the body in front of Subramanyanagar police station on Monday. Kumar had visited a dentist a few days ago, where he was allegedly administered an overdose of medicine. As his face swelled up, he visited a doctor, who told him it was due to the overdose. Seeking action against the dentist, Kumar approached police, who refused to file a complaint, relatives alleged. As his condition worsened, Kumar got admitted to hospital, where he passed away on Monday. ENS

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