Woman caught trying to smuggle in lemons

The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) said the woman had deliberately hidden the lemons in her trousers, but they were sniffed out by a biosecurity dog. Photo / iStock
The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) said the woman had deliberately hidden the lemons in her trousers, but they were sniffed out by a biosecurity dog. Photo / iStock

A woman has been refused entry into New Zealand after trying to smuggle in six lemons in her pants.

Border officials caught the lemon smuggler at Auckland Airport after she arrived on a flight from Hong Kong on Monday.

The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) said the woman had deliberately hidden the lemons in her trousers, but they were sniffed out by a biosecurity dog.

"She had failed to declare she was carrying any food on her official arrival card, but was found to have the lemons concealed at the top of her pants," the MPI's Craig Hughes said.

"Her excuse was that the lemons were good for her liver and other illnesses. That may be true, but it doesn't justify endangering New Zealand's horticulture industry by illegally bringing in fruit that could harbour pests or diseases."

The woman was refused entry to the country and was forced to return to Hong Kong on the next available flight.

"This is an example of MPI and Immigration New Zealand working closely together to curtail biosecurity offences at the border," Mr Hughes said.

"We want to send a strong message to smugglers who show contempt for our biosecurity rules."

- NZ Herald

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