Customs agents at Paris' Charles de Gaulle airport have seized 115 live scorpions hidden in two shipments from Cameroon to the U.S., perhaps destined for sale on the Internet.
Customs officers showed off the large, black scorpions of the Pandinus dictator variety — a protected species — on Thursday.
The first batch of 69 scorpions was discovered Sept. 18 in 19 plastic boxes containing centipedes. Days later, customs agents intercepted 46 scorpions found in 35 plastic cups. Both were declared as samples for medical research. However, the recipient was identified as individual in the United States who sells numerous "new animal companions" on the Internet.
Last year, French customs seized 1,392 live animals protected by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species.