1.3 million liras worth rhino horns seized at Istanbul airport
ISTANBUL - Demirören News Agency
Customs officers seized rhino horns worth 1.3 million ($245,000) Turkish Liras worth at Istanbul’s Atatürk Airport on Aug. 7.
The officers spotted a suspicious piece of luggage belonging to a passenger traveling from South Africa to Istanbul.
Alarmed by the security personnel’s vigilant activities, the suspect left the airport without collecting their luggage.
The customs officers examined the unattended luggage in an x-ray machine and found it contained a total of nine rhino horns.
It was unclear whether the suspect had planned to sell the horns in Turkey or to transfer them to a third country.
The market value of the smuggled horns is estimated at 1.3 million liras.
The horns of rhinos that face extinction are sold at high prices particularly in some Asian countries.
On the black market in Asia, rhino horns are reputedly worth more than gold. In Eastern Asia, rhino horns are used for medical purposes.