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S/Africa: Customs officials bust smuggling racket

South African officials on Tuesday confiscated a consignment of rhino horn and other contraband worth millions of dollars which was about to be smuggled from Johannesburg’s main airport for several countries.According to the South African Revenue Service (SARS), the rhino horn, which were disguised as “fine art”, were sniffed out by detector dogs at OR Tambo International Airport (ORTIA) while en route to Kuala Lumpur, Singapore.

“During an inspection of warehouses at ORTIA, one of the customs teams, aided by detector dogs, detected and intervened to stop a consignment of goods destined for Kuala Lumpur via Doha,” SARS said in a statement.

The consignment included 41 pieces of rhino horn valued at more than R115 million (about US$6.9 million).

A further search of the warehouse led to the discovery of abalone destined for Hong Kong and the drug ephedrine, which “had been hidden in two printer cartridges and [was] destined for Madagascar”.

Published on 28.04.2020

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