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The ten Strangest Things People Have Attempted to Take on a Plane

July 8, 2014 Headline News, Statistics & Trends No Comments Email Email

Jetcost search engine found turtles, laser swords and even “live” corpses.

Undoubtedly most flight passengers have experienced airport security controls and have been forced to leave behind small bottles of water, nail clippers or even cheese, just for being too creamy. On the other hand, less innocent objects have tried to pass the inspection and on occasion even succeeded. According to the famous travel search engine, these are the ten strangest “hand luggage” items that have attempted to board a plane:

1. A turtle in a hamburger.

It is not completely unfeasible to connect a hamburger with a turtle; there really are some similarities: the round shape, the sort of sandwich and the shiny green colour (be it skin or lettuce). This connection apparently motivated a man in China to put his pet turtle inside a hamburger. A man called Li tried to board a flight to Beijing with his turtle inside a KFC hamburger. When crossing the X rays, the inspectors discovered some “strange bulges” in the hamburger. When asked about it, Mr. Li answered: “This is not a turtle, but just a hamburger. There is nothing to see”, maybe thinking that the turtle-hamburger optical illusion could have remained for a moment more. The news, undoubtedly trivial, has been circulating in newspapers around the world, as light informative yet refreshing news exploiting the optical illusion of this postmodern animal: the turtle-hamburger.

2. A weapon and ammunition in his son’s stuffed toys.

According to Jetcost, one of the most alarming cases was an American father who tried to board a plane with a weapon and ammunition hidden in his 4-years-old son’s stuffed toys. The security officers at the boarding area in Rhode Island T.F. Green airport (USA) could not believe it when they discovered a small arsenal camouflaged inside several of the child’s stuffed toys carried by a father and his four-year-old son who intended to board a plane to Detroit. When the toys were scanned, the Transportation Security Administration officers saw something that seemed suspicious to them: they saw what looked like a container full of bullets inside an apparently harmless white rabbit. Next came a teddy bear, also carrying a surprise: inside was a 40 calibre gun frame. Lastly, the TSA agents put through the X rays the last stuffed toy, Mickey Mouse, that carried the slide and the barrel needed to mount the gun. The authorities took the man and his son into custody but, after interrogating them for several minutes, they allowed them to board their flight without any type of ban. After investigating the case, both the FBI and the airport investigators considered that “they did not represent a threat to air security”. They did however confiscate the weapon and the ammunition.

3. Tadpoles inside the mouth.

A South Korean woman was put under arrest in the Guangzhou Chinese airport when she tried to pass through security checks with her mouth full of tadpoles. The odd story began when the airport guards saw a woman trying to board with a liquid bottle in her hand luggage. In accordance with the rules for international flights, the guards asked the passenger to drink the liquid or throw out the bottle, and the woman chose the first option. The civil servants nevertheless realised the woman had filled her mouth with liquid without swallowing it, and requested she spit it in a bucket. The passenger complied with the demand, leaving both the airport employees and the many flight passengers stunned: along with the liquid, she spat dozens of frogs-to-be. Asked about the reasons for her strange behaviour, the woman explained that a friend had given her the tadpoles and she did not want to lose them. Her moving story did not convince the guards all the same, and made her get rid of her pets before boarding the plane.

4. Seven snakes and three turtles in his pants.

A man tried to board a plane in Miami for Brazil with bags full of exotic snakes and turtles hidden in his pants. The Transportation Security Administration spokesman, Jonathon Allen, said the man was withheld after passing a complete body tomography detector at Miami International Airport. Security employees discovered several nylon bags with seven snakes and three turtles hidden in his pants. The South Florida Sun Sentinel newspaper said the animals were confiscated by the federal Department of Fish and Wildlife and the passenger was arrested.

5. A corpse in a wheelchair pretending to be a passenger.

Two women were arrested at a British airport when they tried to board a plane with a relative’s cadaver as a passenger. Two 41- and 66-year-old German women were arrested at Liverpool John Lennon airport for “failing to give notification of the death” of a 91-years-old man, the relative with whom they were trying to travel to Berlin. The most remarkable thing of this case was the way they intended to continue with the hoax. According to information revealed by the BBC, they laid the man in a wheelchair and put a pair of sunglasses on him. They showed up at the check-in desk in this way, where the employees noticed something suspicious and realised the man was dead, although the women insisted that he was only asleep.

6. A crocodile in a briefcase.

The most serious case Jetcost has been aware of is a stowaway crocodile that escaped from the luggage it was carried in, causing so much anxiety among passengers that it made the plane fall resulting in an accident and several deaths. The crocodile was hidden in a traveller’s sports bag, along with the documents necessary to sell it, but it managed to escape and became angry, spreading terror on the plane. The passengers’ improvised movement due to total panic caused a loss of balance and for the plane to the fall that crashed into a house during a flight from the capital –Kinshasa- to Bandundu local airport. The only survivor of the Let 410 plane crash told the unbelievable story to the investigators. Ironically, the crocodile survived the accident, though it was sacrificed right away by the rescuers with a blow with a machete.

7. A cranium and several human teeth in a suitcase.

Security agents at Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood International Airport, Florida, found a skull and human teeth in the luggage of two women who were travelling to Baltimore, state of Maryland. According to Broward Police, the women declared they had visited Cuba recently, where they bought two sealed containers in a religious store. One of the containers broke and they found inside pieces of a cranium and some teeth. The women, who were going to board an AirTran Baltimore flight, offered to stay and talk with the Police of County Broward in order to clarify the incident. The airport authorities reminded that every suspicious package would be reviewed and recommended that passengers have absolute certainty of the origin of the objects they carry.

8. A laser sword from Star Wars.

USA Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has become famous of late due to the extreme zeal with which they inspect the passengers before they board a flight, even 3-year-old children in a wheelchair. Air force officials however have now literally seen cases from another planet. Peter Mayhew, the actor who performed the hairy Chewbacca in the Star Wars saga, was going back to his residence in Texas when TSA officers stopped him before he got onto the plane in Denver. What was the reason? He was carrying a weapon… nothing other than his laser sabre. In fact he was carrying it for a reason. The 2.21 meters tall English comedian had just shown up in the Colorado ComicCon, along with his legendary extra big light sword, causing a serious debate among the security agents about whether to considerate it a threat or not. Annoyed, Mayhew tried to explain to the guards that due to his height and age –almost 70 years old- he needs the laser sabre as a support for walking. Finally, the American Airline staff, of which Mayhew is a frequent traveller, came to the rescue and managed to convince the TSA agents that it was extremely unlikely that a famous actor would kidnap a plane armed with a light sword.

9. A pigmy monkey in the underwear.

At New Delhi airport in India three men planned to travel to Dubai, but police detected something “strange”: these three subjects carried an odd lump in their pants. This trio intended to smuggle an endangered species: slow lorises. Indira Ghandi International Airport authorities thought the lump in these men’s pants was very suspicious. When inspecting their underwear they realise they were trying to travel with several slow lorises (some primates native to Indonesia) in order to sell them. The lorises were in bags that two of the three men carried in their boxers and their destination could have been Dubai since this was where they were going to from Bangkok; nevertheless, the airport police arrested them while the “People For Animals” organisation took care of the primates.

10. A knife in a mayonnaise jar.

A man tried to fly from New York to Mexico City with a knife hidden inside a mayonnaise jar; the knife and mayonnaise were both confiscated, according to the USA Transportation Security Administration. The man, whose identity was not disclosed, was intercepted by the John F. Kennedy International Airport authorities when the agents discovered the weapon inside the sauce jar. New York and New Jersey Port Authority Police, who have jurisdiction over the airports in both states, confiscated the knife and the mayonnaise jar, but allowed the passenger to board the plane without pressing charges against him. Both the knife and the sauce are prohibited in hand luggage: Jetcost reminds passengers that any liquid or gel cannot be carried into the cabin unless it is carried inside a transparent bag with a maximum capacity of 100ml.

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