US officials seize suspicious bag, uncover mummified monkey remains

CBP K9 Sniffs Out the Illegal Import of Mummified Monkey Remains
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP)

The US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced that its dog had detected an unusual piece of luggage containing nearly 9 pounds (4 kilograms) of mummified monkey remains at Boston Logan International Airport (BOS).

The specific piece of luggage belonged to a traveler who was returning to Boston from the Democratic Republic of Congo on January 8, 2024. According to the recent CBP statement, the bag caught the officers’ attention during the routine luggage screening procedure of Delta Air Lines flight 225 from Paris.

“Upon arrival of foreign flights at Logan Airport, CBP Canine (K9) units perform a preliminary screening of baggage. During the screening of Delta flight 225 from Paris, CBP K9, Buddey alerted his handler to a specific piece of luggage,” the CBP wrote in the statement.

Despite the passenger denying carrying anything illegal during questioning and insisting on only bringing dried fish, it was later discovered that the luggage actually contained some dried fish and four heads of deceased and dehydrated monkeys.

“The luggage was x-rayed and appeared to hold dried fish. Still, upon physical inspection, the officer identified the dead and dehydrated bodies of four monkeys,” the US authority added.

The CBP notified the Center for Disease Control (CDC) regarding the unusual findings and received an order to seize the ‘bushmeat,’ as raw or minimally processed meat from wild animals can potentially pose a risk of communicable diseases.

“The potential dangers posed by bringing bushmeat into the United States are real. […] Bushmeat can carry germs that can cause illness, including the Ebola virus. The work of CBP’s K9 unit and Agricultural Specialist was vital in preventing this potential danger from entering the US,” Julio Caravia, the Area Port Director of CBP Boston, explained.

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