LAX Traveler Caught With 15 Live Lizards Strapped to Chest: Officials

By Olsen Ebright
|  Wednesday, Nov 25, 2009  |  Updated 11:18 AM PDT
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LAX Traveler Caught With 15 Live Lizards Strapped to Chest: Officials

USFWS

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said Friday that 40-year-old Michael Plank of Lomita was returning from Australia when U.S. Customs agents found 11 skinks, two geckos and two monitor lizards fastened to his body.

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Smuggling live creatures through LAX can be a bit of a challenge (see: the song bird incident), and one man has learned that lesson the hard way.

Lomita resident Michael Plank, 40, was arrested after authorities found 15 live lizards strapped to his chest, federal officials said Friday.

U.S. Customs agents found 11 skinks, two geckos and two monitor lizards fastened to his body Tuesday, the Associated Press reported. He did not have a permit for the reptiles, say officials.

Plank, who was returning from Australia, has been released on $10,000 bond.

Authorities say the lizards' value totals more than $8,500.
 

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