Berlin : A man almost got through the check in, at Berlin airport when the police got suspicious of a pastry box being carried by a passenger. On opening it was found the pastries in fact were live tortoises being smuggled by the passenger. A man put three tortoises in a pastry box and almost got away with smuggling them through customs at Schonefeld Airport in Berlin earlier this month.
The 69 year old man debarked his flight from Cairo on March 2 and tried to pass through the “nothing to declare” line at customs. But officers stopped the man and searched his belongings. In a suitcase, they found the dessert box and noticed something suspicious about the three pastries inside.
They were an unusual shape and the customs even asked the passenger of the strange marks on the “pastries” on which the passenger replied they were chocolates.
Officers found three living Moroccan tortoises inside the packaging.
The animals were confiscated and placed under the protection of the border veterinarian.
The Moroccan tortoise is a species protected by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora. Breaking international species protection laws is punishable by a fine up to $56,000 along with a jail term.