Elephant Meat, Dead Primate, Snake Bags Seized at LAX

The charmingly named Daily Breeze reports on an ugly story: Seizures by U.S. Customs officials in Los Angeles that included elephant meat, a dead (stuffed) primate and several purses made from various reptiles. Most of the creatures are endangered.

Primate in pants (this really happened)

What People Do with This Stuff

A spokesman for Customs could only speculate on the ultimate purpose of some of these weird items.

Primate: The would-be recipients of the stuffed primate (a Macaque) may have intended to display the poor creature’s carcass, which calls into question the intended owner’s interior decorating skills. On the other hand, there may have been plans to use the body for some unknown scientific purpose.

Elephant meat: The half pound or so of Asian Elephant meat was shipped from Thailand to Fresno, and the Breeze quotes an inspector as saying, “Some cultures could try to use the meat for food or medicinal purposes.”

For humans only: find a cheap flight fast

Reptiles: Most of these seizures involved women’s purses made from such creatures as cobras, pythons, monitor lizards and dwarf alligators. According to witnesses, they were meant to be sold in the U.S., though apparently no one was going to mistake them for Gucci or Birkin bags.

Weird Finds at Security, Too

The TSA has been busy with seizures, too. The airport security is force is always running across weird stuff and last week was no different with 31 guns taken from passengers at airports across the U.S. (25 were loaded). Also found:

  • Stun guns (8)
  • Inert hand grenades (6)
  • Swords (2)
  • Throwing stars (2)
  • 11-inch hunting knife (1)


Published: May 21, 2013