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Three more passengers fined for bringing meat products into Taiwan

2019/01/04 19:25:29

Photo courtesy of Taipei Customs

Taipei, Jan. 4 (CNA) Three more travelers were fined NT$200,000 (US$6,470) on Friday for bringing meat products into the country, according to Taipei Customs.

Two travelers arriving in Taiwan from China and one coming from Hong Kong were issued the fine for violating the Statute for Prevention and Control of Infectious Animal Disease, Taipei Customs said.

A Chinese tourist, identified by his family name Wang (王), was found with 45 grams of cooked pig liver and 673 grams of fruit in his carry-on bag upon arrival at Taoyuan International Airport from Changchun in Jilin province as a member of a tour group.

Wang said he had the food with him in case he got hungry.

A passenger from Hong Kong surnamed Shao (邵) and a Taiwanese traveler surnamed Yang (楊), were found with 660 grams of sausage and 800 grams of biscuits containing pork, respectively.

Although fines ranging between NT$200,000 and NT$1 million have been imposed on passengers smuggling in meat products since Dec. 18, the number of offenders has not dropped, Taipei Customs said.

To avoid being fined, arriving passengers who are unsure whether the items they are carrying are allowed into the country are advised to first seek information at the No. 7 Goods to declare/Customs service counter at the airport, it said.

Taiwan has cracked down on any food products containing pork coming in from China, which has been hit by an outbreak of African swine fever (ASF), which is lethal to pigs.

Authorities are worried that if the resilient ASF virus spreads in Taiwan, it could destroy the country's NT$80 billion hog-raising industry.

(By Chiu Chun-chin and Flor Wang)