Swiss spider-smuggler seized on German border

17th March 2009, Comments 0 comments

The trap-door spiders, most "as big as a fist," were found wriggling around in boxes and plastic bags.

Berlin -- German customs officials inspecting a Swiss car got a nasty shock when they discovered 164 large spiders and 45 boxes of cockroaches -- the arachnids' food for the journey, a spokesman said Monday.

The trap-door spiders, most "as big as a fist," were found wriggling around in boxes and plastic bags, Markus Ueckert, a spokesman for the customs office in the south-western German city of Loerrach said.

"Of course, the officers didn't open anything. They knew immediately what was going on," Ueckert added.

The Swiss driver was hoping to sell the specimens at a fair in Germany but his haul was seized when he failed to produce the proper licence. The incident occurred on Thursday.

The same man was stopped at exactly the same place in 2007 trying to sneak nearly 1,000 spiders across the border in his car and that of a German accomplice.

He has been charged with tax fraud and breaking nature protection laws.

AFP/Expatica

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