An Austrian man who smuggled 88 living reptiles including 43 poisonous snakes from the Philippines was stopped by customs officers at Vienna airport, Austria’s Finance Ministry said Thursday.
Concise News reports that when the Austrian national arrived via Doha on Sunday, the officers screened his suitcase and saw that it was full of animals.
After the man admitted that it contained poisonous snakes, the officers decided to transfer the closed luggage to Vienna’s Schoenbrunn Zoo, where experts opened it.
They found Samar cobras, Mangrove snakes and vipers, as well as dozens of monitor lizards and geckos. Many of the smaller animals were transported in nylon stockings.
The traveller said that he had planned to sell the reptiles at a fair in Germany.
He faces legal proceedings for alleged breach of Austria’s law regulation trade in protected species.
The zoo in Vienna as well as an Austrian reptile zoo agreed to take in the animals.
Polish citizens to revisit India to relive memories as World War II refugees
In related news, a group of Polish citizens will revisit Kolhapur district in India’s western state of Maharashtra from Friday to Sunday to relive their childhood memories spent from 1942-48 as refugees, a statement said.
The statement issued on Thursday by Indian Government’s Press Information Bureau.
Around 5,000 Polish people lived in Kolhapur district after they fled their country during World War II and they left there after peace returned to their motherland.
Most of them, who will pay a revisit, were either born at Valivade village in Kolhapur district, or were children when they left the camp, local sources said.
Valivade has now turned into an urban hub and is called Gandhinagar, nine kilometres from Kolhapur city.
Deputy Foreign Minister of Poland, Marcin Przydacz, will also be on a two-day visit to Kolhapur district during this period.
Przydacz will unveil a commemoration post on Saturday, according to Daulat Desai, Kolhapur District Collector.
A permanent museum will also be built over the next year, containing photographs, paintings, and other important items and materials from that era to retain the memories for the next generations, the statement said.
A one-day conference with city professionals and entrepreneurs will also be held on Saturday, the district collector said.