Turtle Smugglers Caught
(Toronto, Ontario, Canada)
A Canadian man facing charges in the U.S. over an alleged reptile smuggling operation was caught at the border with 51 live turtles stuffed down his pants, recently unsealed court documents say.Xu and an accomplice, Lihua Lin, face U.S federal charges of smuggling, illegal trading and exporting.
The U.S. federal court documents say officers with the Canada Border Services Agency intercepted Kai Xu as he attempted to cross into Windsor, Ont., from Detroit last month.
"During the secondary inspection, Xu was found to have 51 live turtles tapped (sic) to his person," Kenneth Adams, a special agent with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, stated in an affidavit outlining the criminal complaint.
"Specifically, Xu had 41 turtles tapped (sic) to his legs and 10 hidden between his legs."
Canadian authorities seized the turtles, which included North American varieties such as eastern box turtles, red-eared sliders and diamondback terrapins -- some of which sell for $800 each -- and turned them over to American officials.