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German border agents reveal oddest seizures

By
Ben Hooper
A monkey belonging to pop star Justin Bieber is among the strangest items seized by German border control authorities. UPI/David Silpa
A monkey belonging to pop star Justin Bieber is among the strangest items seized by German border control authorities. UPI/David Silpa | License Photo

MUNICH, Germany, Sept. 3 (UPI) -- German border control authorities said some of the oddest items seized from travelers include Justin Bieber's monkey and heroin concealed in canned tomatoes.

The Local.de reported some of the strangest items recovered by customs authorities in Germany include a skull and bones found in the luggage of a woman traveling from Brazil to Italy in 2008. The woman told authorities at Munich Airport the remains belonged to her brother, who had died 11 years earlier in Brazil and had requested to be buried in Italy.

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Customs agents have also come across primate remains, with Munich Airport authorities seizing a maggot-infested baboon skull in a 2008 piece of airmail from South Africa and Frankfort Airport customs agents seizing four baboon skulls and three firearms from the luggage of a 60-year-old Bavarian man who returned to the country from South Africa in 2007. Customs officers in Dusseldorf discovered a monkey arm in a package in May of this year and the recipient's home was raided, leading to the seizure of a collection of stuffed birds dressed as Nazi officers.

A live monkey belonging to U.S. pop star Justin Bieber was famously seized by Munich Airport Customs in March of last year and was taken to a wildlife refuge after the singer failed to claim his pet.

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Officials at the German-Dutch border reported finding 1.3 tons of heroin concealed inside cans of tomato puree in January of this year. The haul, worth $28.3 million, led to two Turkish truck drivers being sent to a Dutch court. Two months later, German customs intercepted a package containing 14 condoms filled with $52,576 worth of cocaine sent from South America to an address in the Vatican.

Frankfurt Airport officials revealed in May 2014 a Mexican man was arrested by security officials who discovered he was in possession of 90 exotic animals, including 55 tortoises, 30 lizards, four vipers and an iguana.

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