In the latest bizarre airline news, U.S. officials arrested a Brazil-bound man at Miami International Airport last week who reportedly attempted to pass through the security checkpoint with seven exotic snakes and three tortoises ... in his pants.
According to the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), the incident happened on Aug. 25 when security officials were screening passengers with a millimeter wave advanced imaging technology machine.
While snakes and tortoises may not pose a threat to aviation, non-metallic weapons and explosive concealed beneath clothing remain a concern for security personnel and this discovery demonstrates again the effectiveness of advanced imaging technology, TSA spokesman Jon Allen wrote in a statement.
According to WKMG in Miami, the man was taken aside after TSA officials noticed something odd in the passenger's pants. When he was taken in for further screening, TSA officials discovered the exotic animals held in nylon sacks and concealed in the man's trousers.
The South Florida Sun Sentinel newspaper reports the animals were taken by the U.S. Department of Fish and Wildlife.
The man was arrested and charged with violating the Lacey Act, which pertains to imports of exotic animals. The man could face a maximum of five years in jail.
While the TSA said no to snakes on a plane this week, last week they dealt with an attempted bird smuggler.
Two endangered birds were found wrapped in socks and taped to the chest and leg of a woman attempting to board a flight from Los Angeles to China.
Just when you may be thinking this is a lot of animal smuggling in a short period of time, this was, quite amazingly, not the only case of a man putting snakes in his pants this week.
Twenty-two-year-old Eric Fiegel was arrested Tuesday after police reviewed surveillance footage from Predator's Reptile Center in Mesa, Arizona and found that Fiegel stole several baby albino boa constrictors by stuffing them in his shorts.