Falcon Smuggler Arrested at Cairo Airport as Bag Moves
A falcon smuggler was caught red handed at Cairo airport Tuesday night when his bag began to move of its own accord in front of customs inspectors, airport officials said Wednesday.
The Egyptian national who was heading for Abu Dhabi where falconry is big sport tried to convince the inspectors that there were live pigeons in his bag when they noticed it moving on the floor.
But when they searched it, they found 24 falcons, worth an estimated 720,000 Egyptian pounds (around 195,000 dollars), protected by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna (CITES).
It was the second attempt to smuggle falcons out of Cairo airport in less than a week, after another Egyptian tried to travel with five Indian falcons to Qatar.
Falconry is a prestigious sport in Arab Gulf states where wealthy dignitaries covet rare species to use to hunt in the desert -- CAIRO (AFP)
© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)