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Customs intercepts 7 baby pythons smuggled in toy shipment

October 12, 2012 6:04pm

Customs officers at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport on Friday foiled an attempt to smuggle seven baby pythons into the country.
Bureau of Customs Commissioner Rozzano Rufino Biazon said the seven were concealed in a shipment of toys from Indonesia.
"BOC-NAIA seize(d) seven pythons smuggled inside a shipment of toys from Indonesia. This is a violation of RA 9147 (the Wildlife Resources Conservation and Protection Act) and the Tariff and Customs Code," Biazon said on his Twitter account.
Under Section 13 of Republic Act 9137, "(n)o exotic species shall be introduced into the country, unless a clearance from the Secretary or the authorized representative is first obtained."
Even in cases where introduction is allowed, "it shall be subject to environmental impact study which shall focus on the bioecology, socioeconomic and related aspects of the area where the species will be introduced," and the proponent "shall also be required to secure the prior informed consent from the local stakeholders."
Biazon posted photos indicating the baby pythons were placed in a shipment of toy cars.

BOC-NAIA Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service (CIIS) chief Verne Enciso said the snakes were discovered during a random inspection. He said that the package came from Indonesia last Thursday.
“The snakes were hidden inside two plastic toy cars. The package weighed 4.5 kilograms. They were placed in a dimension of two shoe boxes combined,” Enciso said.
Biazon did not immediately say if arrests were made, but according to Enciso, the parcel was onsigned to a certain Yuki Arabia of 33 Rosas St. Pildera 1, Pasay City.
In the market, a baby ball python is worth between P9,500 to P11,000.

The BOC has already coordinated with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Protected Areas and Wildlife Bureau (DENR-PAWB) for the disposal of the pythons. — KBK, GMA News
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