Smuggler Tries Crossing US Border With 52 Live Reptiles Stuffed In His Clothes


Jack Dunhill

Social Media Coordinator and Staff Writer

clockMar 11 2022, 15:36 UTC
shocked lizard

Of all the animals to stuff under your clothes... Image Credit: Reptiles4all/

A 30-year-old man was arrested after trying to cross the US border with clothes stuffed to the brim with snakes and horned lizards, say US Customs and Border Protection.


The man was traveling through the San Ysidro crossing from Mexico when officers asked for a personal and vehicle search. Hidden beneath his jacket, in his pants pockets, and around his groin were 43 horned lizards and 9 snakes, carefully bagged to be smuggled into the country. 

“Smugglers will try every possible way to try and get their product, or in this case live reptiles, across the border,” said Sidney Aki, CBP Director of Field Operations in San Diego, in a statement.   

“In this occasion, the smuggler attempted to deceive CBP officers in order to bring these animals into the US, without taking care for the health and safety of the animals. CBP enforces hundreds of laws at the border for more than 40 different government agencies, in part to help stop smuggling attempts like these which can lead to trafficking of possibly endangered species.” 

The snakes and lizards found with the smuggler. Image credit: U.S. Customs and Border Protection

 All the live animals were seized, and the man has since been arrested and transferred to a correctional center. Officials have not specified the charges the man may be facing, but the smuggling of live animals is a federal crime and subject to up to 20 years in prison and a large fine. 

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