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Louisville customs officials seize cockfighting implements in recent shipment from Mexico

A package arriving from Mexico City was targeted by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers at the Louisville Port of Entry on Jan 17. The officers inspected the parcel and found 120 cockfighting spurs and two gaffs/leg attachment sheaths.

The shipment, headed to a residence in Rantoul, Illinois, was manifested as handcrafted Mexican artisan rattles. These spurs are illegal in the U.S. under Title 7 U.S. Code 2156 that states the buying, selling, delivering, or transporting sharp instruments for use in animal fighting ventures is prohibited. Additionally, cockfighting is illegal as part of the Farm Act, which banned cockfighting in all 16 U.S. territories in 2018.

(Photo from U.S. CBP)

“A great job by our officers keeping dangerous and illegal items from reaching our community said LaFonda D. Sutton-Burke, Director, Field Operations-Chicago Field Office. “This is yet another dramatic example of how dedicated CBP officers are to the CBP mission.”

Cockfighting spurs are razor-sharp blades tied to the bird’s legs. During a cockfight, the birds are placed in a pen face-to-face and commonly use these spurs to kill or incapacitate their opponent. These spurs are so dangerous that handlers are often slashed by their own bird.

“The improper manifesting of contraband as a harmless or legitimate commodity is a common tactic used by some ill-intended importers to elude further examination,” according to Thomas Mahn, Port Director-Louisville. “However, CBP officers are trained and vigilant in the detection of those types of tricks and work hard to make sure these illegal spurs stay out of our communities.”

CBP routinely conducts inspection operations on arriving and departing international flights and intercepts narcotics, weapons, currency, prohibited agriculture products, counterfeit goods, and other illicit items at our nation’s 328 international ports of entry.

CBP’s border security mission is led at ports of entry by CBP officers from the Office of Field Operations. Please visit CBP Ports of Entry to learn more about how CBP’s Office of Field Operations secures our nation’s borders. Learn more about CBP at www.CBP.gov.

From U.S. Customs and Border Protection

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