“Oslo Airport does not want to be a port of entry for illegal souvenirs that contribute to crime and the extinction of endangered animal and plant species,” says Joachim Westher Andersen, media manager and spokesperson for Oslo Airport.
Many species are currently threatened with extinction. Despite this fact, they are used in the production of souvenirs, jewellery, leather, health foods and so on in many countries.
“The Customs Service at Oslo Airport uncovers a large number of attempts to smuggle endangered species. The most common seizures are belts, shoes and wallets made of snake and crocodile skins, as well as supplements that supposedly have slimming, energising and protective effects,” says Tor Fredriksen, office manager for Norwegian Customs and Excise at Oslo Airport.
“We take a very serious view of these things, and confiscate everything we find,” he continues.
Typical products you must be aware of include items made of ivory, tortoiseshell, snakeskins, conch shells and coral.
Importing such products without special permission is illegal and punishable by law. The Customs Service at Oslo Airport therefore reports all such cases to the police.
“Both organised smugglers and ordinary tourists risk being charged for importing such products. We hope we don’t see much of this during the summer season,” says Fredriksen.