The Great Turtle Smuggling Operation
Please enjoy this sad yet adorable photo of duct-taped turtles.
Bureau of Customs NAIAThe tape provides crucial resistance training if you want them to grow up into ninjas.
Those were among 1,500 turtles found in four unclaimed suitcases in Manila's international airport. Three of the four species represented are classified as vulnerable, making it illegal to poach and sell them. But the exotic pet trade doesn't really care about technicalities like "our hobby might drive these creatures to extinction," and so the smuggled turtles had a street value of $87,000. Just imagine someone furtively opening up their trench coat to show you their wide range of endangered turtles, urging you to make a decision before the cool drug dealers laugh them out of the dark alleyway.
Bureau of Customs NAIA"Throw some cookies and an old shoe in there. That should mask the smell of a thousand cramped reptiles."
Some of the turtles were taped up, while others had been stuffed in plastic containers or buried in clothes. The flight had arrived from Hong Kong, but the bags were never claimed, with authorities suspecting that the smuggler got cold feet upon being reminded of the potential ten years in jail and $1.3 million fine they could face for animal smuggling. Thankfully, all of the turtles survived and were transferred to a care unit, joining geckos, iguanas, chameleons, and bearded dragons on the list of critters that had recently been nabbed at the border. Sadly, authorities did not sternly pose for photos with a table covered in guns and 1,500 turtles. Instead they were merely described by the media as "shell-shocked." More than one crime was committed here.
Canadian Thieves Stole Thousands Of Dollars' Worth Of Fancy Water
In Newfoundland -- the West Virginia of Canada -- thieves made off with 30,000 liters of water. (The American equivalent would be 63,401.3 pints of Coors Light.) But this wasn't just any old water for chumps. It was iceberg water, kept in a special storage facility and meant for use in vodka production. After all, if you can put a picture of a glacier on your vodka bottle, you can charge double to people who will feel classy while they dump it into Red Bull.
Beyond possibly getting revenge for the Titanic, it's unclear what the goal of the thieves was. Iceberg water is valuable -- it's an expensive pain in the ass to harvest, but it's some of the cleanest water on the planet. The Mounties estimated that the stolen water would theoretically be worth up to $9,000. And since the water is only harvested once a year, the thieves had precise timing.