TODAY’S GENIUS AWARD GOES TO……
A Chinese air traveler attempted to smuggle 200 live scorpions out of Sri Lanka in his checked bags. The man was arrested at a departure gate at Bandaranaike International Airport as he was trying to board his SriLankan Airlines flight to Guangzhou, China.
The 30-year-old was detained and fined about $550. During questioning, the man admitted to illegally transporting animals from different countries to his home country for breeding and selling purposes.
He said he traveled to various parts of Sri Lanka in search of scorpions, guided by information received from drivers of “tuk tuks,” or three-wheeled taxis. The man was eventually allowed to return home and his scorpions, which were neatly packed in plastic containers, were taken from him.
Sunil Jayaratne, a spokesman for Sri Lanka’s customs department, told Geo TV the value of the scorpions hasn’t been determined and noted wildlife trafficking has become a “lucrative trade.” Officials indicated he might have been planning to extract venom from the arachnids once he returned to China.