Live duct-taped turtles, numbering about 1500, have been found, packed into abandoned suitcases at a Philippines airport. The exotic turtles were found wrapped in duct-tape and stuffed in suitcases. They belonged to four different species – the star, redfoot, African spurred tortoises and the red-eared slider turtle. Of these species, the star, redfoot and African spurred tortoises have been marked as ‘vulnerable’ in the IUCN Redlist. These species are usually sold illegally as exotic pets. The turtles in question were recovered from four pieces of unclaimed baggage at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport , Manila, and might have been smuggled onto a flight from Hong Kong. The net worth of these turtles are estimated to be approximately 4.5 million Philippine pesos, amounting to roughly 87000USD. According to the Philippines Bureau of Customs agency, a total of 560 different species of exotic species were seized by the agency when found packed in various parcels, luggage and shipment in 2018. The animals found included geckos, corals and various other reptiles.
As reported by CNN