This is definitely one of the more audacious smuggling attempts ever made…
A Canadian man pleaded guilty to smuggling more than 1,000 reptiles out of the U.S. after being caught at a border crossing with 51 turtles and terrapins taped to his body. Genius, obviously an ex-Mensa member.
Kai Xu, 27, ordered the turtles online and travelled to Michingan to pick them up, before shipping them to China or returning with them to Ontario, Canada.
Xu pleaded guilty to six crimes in a federal court in Ann Arbor and now faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison- as it’s illegal to export wildlife from the U.S. without a government permit.
Apparently, trading in reptiles is big business. In the court filing, assistant U.S. attorney, Sara Woodward said that Xu regularly dealt in shipments worth from $30,000 to $125,000. The turtles are sold for two to three times more in China.
Xu has been in custody since his arrest back in September 2014 in Detroit and describes himself as an engineering student at the University of Waterloo in Ontario. However, the university said he wasn’t enrolled at the time of his arrest.
Wildlife agent Ken Adams said that whilst Xu was under surveillance he was seen picking up a box at a United Parcel Service site before hiding behind trucks. He then emerged with “irregularly shaped bulges” under his sweat pants. Sweat pants? Really?
He returned to Ontario but was stopped by Canadian border authorities who found 51 live turtles taped to his legs.
One thing’s for sure, these guys would hate Xu more than they hate Shredder…