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    USSURI CUSTOMS OFFICERS ARREST CHINESE TRUCK CARRYING BEAR PAWS, OTHER ORGANS OF WILD ANIMALS

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    MOSCOW, MARCH 19 (RIA NOVOSTI) - The Ussuri customs office has arrested a Chinese truck carrying 800 bear paws and organs of other wild animals, reports the press service of the Russian State Customs Committee. It happened on March 19, 2004 at the Poltavka customs post where customs officers and frontier guards, on examining a Kamaz truck, discovered a big consignment of remains of wild animals and their derivatives (including products of their processing), says the Customs Committee's official report.

    When the half-empty truck belonging to a Chinese company was being checked, notice was taken of a heap of objects in a container. The driver, a citizen of China, said he had been asked on his way home to deliver to China some old accumulators and several cases of foodstuffs. A thorough examination of the cargo revealed 800 bear paws, packages with trepang, horns, hides and derivatives. All the smuggled objects have been placed at a warehouse to be re-counted. Their total value is to be determined later.

    This is the largest fauna contraband detained over the past several years, says the document.

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