What's the strangest thing you've had taken by Customs?

6
votes

Mine was an unopened bag of Walmart dog biscuits that were lying on the front seat of my car.

4988 views
updated FEB 6, 2011
posted by 0057ed01
Forgot to mention this was by US Customs, just the other day.

16 Answers

3
votes

Mine was at the airport and it was a 25mm screwdriver, (1" long), that was fixed to a key ring and was used to tighten the screws on reading glasses. Customs said I could use it to attack the plane's crew. They confiscated it. We passed through the "checkin" and went to a restaurant prior to the flight where they gave me a 150mm serrated edged knife, (6" long), to cut my steak, along with a very useful fork. Amazing isn't it. Who the hell decides on these priorities?

updated FEB 6, 2011
edited by Eddy
posted by Eddy
They let me take a full set of steel crochet hooks on the plane. The kind grandma could use to do heart surgery or take your eye out. go figger.
is it possible that something can be both incredible and credible? This example surely is...
heheh
3
votes

Not had taken - but sort of "discovered".

Returning to Australia from South America a customs agent quizzed my son and myself about a souvenir my son had bought in Peru. An ugly gargoyle-looking type of thing. My son (15 at the time ) just fancied it because it was so hideous. The customs agent said "Don't you know that this is?" took it apart and yes inside it was a huge knife, really sharp...We were allowed to keep it...but that was in the old days...

Annie.

updated FEB 4, 2011
posted by nonombre
2
votes

Just remembered a friend who found a solution to a confiscation.

She had a mango (definitely not permitted) and when the agent told her he was taking it, she took a huge bite out of it and cooly proceeded to eat the whole thing. Then she handed the seed to the agent.

Or, so she claims...

updated FEB 4, 2011
posted by 0057ed01
I've seen agents be nice and suggest that the people sit a moment and enjoy their fruit that they can't bring into the US.
2
votes

Ha ha! Interesting question. I once went to Mexico, and they have Customs there, the checked my bag and pulled out a watch :/ Yes, they took it away... Must have been the ticking? I don't know. Still don't know why the took it...

updated FEB 4, 2011
edited by Austinman14
posted by Austinman14
That was pure theft! Fortunately, the MX Gov't has clamped down on such shenanigans over the past few years.
Yeah, you was robbed man...
2
votes

When I was living in Australia, some of my friends from the states sent me some autumn leaves since I would be missing my favorite season that year. Austrailian customs left a letter in with the rest of my care package stating that they had "confiscated and destroyed" the leaves.

updated FEB 4, 2011
posted by ahegna1128
1
vote

Just remembered a friend who found a solution to a confiscation.

She had a mango (definitely not permitted) and when the agent told her he was taking it, she took a huge bite out of it and cooly proceeded to eat the whole thing. Then she handed the seed to the agent.

That's really funny, because a friend of mine had a similar story with a bottle of wine. LOL

updated FEB 4, 2011
posted by 00e657d4
1
vote

I haven't had anything strange taken from me by Customs.....but I know of a strange item taken by Customs:


Possibly inspired by the comedy horror film Snakes on a Plane, a woman in Stockholm, Sweden, was arrested trying to smuggle 75 live snakes in her bra, according to research by the online travel agent www.sunshine.co.uk. Customs officials became suspicious when they spotted the woman repeatedly scratching her chest. Clearly they were either very small snakes, or the lady in question was wearing a very large bra.

updated FEB 4, 2011
posted by Seb79
Medusa lives
jejejeje....:) ;)
0
votes

1.5 inch scissors - the really cheap ones that come in little hotel sewing kits for repairing buttons and whatnot. I think you could have bent them with your bare fingers. The funny part was, I had brought them to do some embroidery on the plane and they took those scissors, but not my stitch-picker (3 inches long, pointy and SHARP) which i ended up using to cut thread on the plane.

updated FEB 4, 2011
posted by tlynnec
I had one of those taken in Panamá. The funny thing is that I had been travelling for years with those things in my hand luggage, and I had just been on a series of international flights. Didn't bother the inspectos either in the US or other countries...
...but the Panama guys decided that they constituted a dangerous weapon.
0
votes

I was cruising to Mexico and my mother had a cocunut and they confiscated it and Im not sure what they did with it but I thought it was funny they wouldn't let her take it back on the ship.

Edit: Suggestions

I was once on a Mexican cruise (with my mother), and at one of the stop-offs, my mother had a coconut that they confiscated. it and I'm not sure what they did with it, but I thought it was funny (that) they wouldn't let her take it back on the ship.

Note: Your original sentence had several clauses (incorrectly) joined by various coordinating conjunctions. Aside from the fact that a coordinating conjunction should be preceded by a comma when it joins two independent clauses, you also have a total of five independent clauses combined by such conjunctions to form a single sentence. Combining so many clauses in this manner leaves you with what is often referred to as a run-on sentence (a stylistic error which is generally best avoided).

The first sentence could also be restructured to say something like:

I was on a cruise of Mexico, and at one of the stop-offs, they confiscated a coconut from my mother.

I was on a vacation cruise to Mexico, and at one of the stop-offs, they confiscated a coconut that my mother tried to carry on board.

In any case, these are just some suggestions to consider smile

updated FEB 4, 2011
edited by Izanoni1
posted by Trembly2015
0
votes

They dint take anything with them, but poured my moisturizing cream in dustbin in my place before boading the flight to Zurich. That was my first time flight travel and I dint know that we are not supposed to carry more than 100ml in handluggage. long face

Edit: Suggestions

They didn't take anything with them, but they poured my moisturizing cream into a dustbin in my place before I boarded my flight to Zurich. That was my first time flying, and I didn't know that we were not supposed (allowed) to carry on more than 100 ml in our hand luggage.

updated FEB 4, 2011
edited by Izanoni1
posted by soms
Corrections suggested above. :)
0
votes

A steak and kidney pudding (in a tin) in Australia.

updated FEB 4, 2011
posted by ian-hill
0
votes

It is also interesting what US Customs looks at and lets come into the country. I once brought the skull of a dog through, with barely a lifted eyebrow from the Customs agent. I had already prepared a sob story about my poor departed canine companion, but did not have to use it.

(Why did I want to bring a dog skull, you ask? Well, I am a Girl Scout leader and we learn about predators & prey in part from skulls and teeth!)

updated FEB 4, 2011
posted by LaBurra
0
votes

While leaving the USA for a trip to Ecuador about a year ago, customs didn't like the small boxes of tofu my wife packed. They really wanted to take them, but my wife's diet would have been changed and affect her health. We argued a long time, and finally got permission.

I think they feared the boxes were explosives.

updated FEB 4, 2011
posted by pesta
0
votes

I went to China once and bought a 'Little Red Book', which was later confiscated at the Customs. They were afraid that the book could corrupt certain societal culture. I found it really funny.

updated FEB 4, 2011
posted by Raphael_Woods
0
votes

They took my life, but they'll never take my freedom...

updated FEB 4, 2011
posted by afowen