SINGAPORE: Five leopard geckos were seized from a Singapore-registered car at Woodlands Checkpoint last Friday (Jun 2), after they were found hidden inside pillows at the rear passenger seat.
The car was driven by a 51-year-old Singaporean man who was accompanied by a 32-year-old Singaporean female passenger.
They were directed for further checks shortly before 4pm and the five live geckos were discovered during inspection, said the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) and the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) in a joint news release on Tuesday.
The case has been referred to the AVA which is investigating the matter.
Keeping wild animals such as exotic amphibians, snakes and lizards are not allowed in Singapore, the authorities reminded.
"Wild animals are not suitable pets as some may transmit zoonotic diseases to humans and can be a public safety risk if mishandled, or if they escape into our dense urban environment," the release said, adding that wild animals that are non-native to Singapore may also be a threat to the bio-diversity if released into the environment.
Anyone convicted of importing animals or live birds without an AVA permit can be fined a maximum of S$10,000, jailed up to one year, or both.