Some press releases are just more interesting than others.
Take the one we just got from the CBP (Customs and Border Protection) and the U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security. They stopped a passenger off a flight from Vietnam as something fishy (make that planty) showed up on an x-ray scan of their luggage. CBP sent a pic of what they found (see left): 65 live bonsai plants and 7 bulbs hidden in coffee bags and not declared.
Starting Jan. 1, many passengers from Vietnam bring in bonsais and other plants for the Vietnamese New Year celebration (T?t) in February. To bring in any live plants you need a “valid phytosanity certificate issued by the country of origin” as plants often bring in disease and bugs.
They charged ‘em $300 for their intricately twisted passengers. While this isn’t much more than the airlines lovely baggage fees, you might wanna leave the greenery at home.