In the last one month, two travellers from Nigeria were arrested at Hong Kong International Airport with over 50kg of suspected cut ivory stashed inside their pockets of a tailor-made vest and underpants.
One of them, a 26-year-old man, was intercepted as he arrived the city from Abuja via Dubai in the United Arab Emirates.
“During clearance, Customs officers found about 15kg of suspected cut ivory concealed in a tailor-made vest and a pair of underpants inside his check-in luggage and 1kg of suspected cut ivory in his hand luggage,” the Customs and Excise Department said.
The haul was estimated to be worth HK$160,000 in Hong Kong, and the department said the man may face prosecution.
Officers handed the case to the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department for further investigation. The department oversees matters relating to ivory in the city.
Under the Protection of Endangered Species of Animals and Plants Ordinance, any person found guilty of importing endangered species without a license is liable to a maximum penalty of HK$5 million and two years in jail.
Customs officers also arrested a 42-year-old traveller with 15kg of suspected ivory products stashed inside the pockets of a tailor-made vest. He had also travelled from Abuja via Dubai.