Attempt to smuggle 40 live birds foiled at Woodlands Checkpoint

Channel NewsAsia 28 Dec 18;

SINGAPORE: A man was caught trying to smuggle live birds into Singapore last Friday after authorities heard "some unusual noise" coming from his car as he was passing through Woodlands Checkpoint, the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) said on Friday (Dec 28).

In a Facebook post, ICA said the 49-year-old Singaporean had been driving a Singapore-registered car when he was stopped for further checks, during which officers detected the sounds coming from underneath the rear passenger seat.

"Upon lifting the seat, ICA officers found two boxes containing 40 live birds," the authorities said, adding that the case was handed over to the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA). The birds are currently under AVA's care.

"Smuggled animals are of unknown health status and may introduce exotic diseases such as bird flu to Singapore," said ICA.

Anyone found guilty of smuggling any animal or live bird into the country may be fined up to S$10,000 and/or jailed up to a year.

40 live birds found in car at Woodlands Checkpoint
Ng Huiwen Straits Times 29 Dec 18;

A Singaporean man's attempt to smuggle 40 live birds through Woodlands Checkpoint was foiled after officers heard a strange noise coming from the passenger seat of his car.

The Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) said in a Facebook post yesterday that the 49-year-old, who was driving a Singapore-registered car, had been directed for further checks by officers on Dec 21.

During the checks, ICA officers noticed an unusual noise from the rear passenger seat, where they found two boxes containing 40 live birds.

The ICA said the case has been referred to the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) for further investigations. The birds are currently being cared for by the AVA.

In its Facebook post, the ICA said the health status of the smuggled animals is not known, and that these animals may introduce exotic diseases, such as bird flu, to Singapore.

Under the Animals and Birds Act, importing any animals or live birds into Singapore without a licence is illegal. Offenders face a maximum fine of $10,000, imprisonment of up to a year, or both.

"Our borders are our first line of defence in safeguarding Singapore's security. ICA will continue to conduct security checks to prevent smuggling attempts," the authority said.