In the last five years, criminal gangs in Moldova have been stopped four times from selling radioactive materials, including bomb-grade uranium, on the black market. You have to wonder if they have also succeeded one or more times, and we just don't know about it yet.
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In that operation, wiretaps and interviews with investigators show, a middleman for the gang repeatedly ranted with hatred for America as he focused on smuggling the essential material for an atomic bomb and blueprints for a dirty bomb to a Middle Eastern buyer.
In wiretaps, videotaped arrests, photographs of bomb-grade material, documents and interviews, AP found that smugglers are explicitly targeting buyers who are enemies of the West. The developments represent the fulfillment of a long-feared scenario in which organized crime gangs are trying to link up with groups such as the Islamic State and al-Qaida — both of which have made clear their ambition to use weapons of mass destruction.
Earlier this month, a huge bundle of marijuana fell from the sky over Nogales, Arizona, crashing through the roof of a carport and destroying a dog house. Bill and Maya Donnelly turned the 23.8 pound of weed over to police who valued it at $9,500. From the Nogales International:
The Donnellys said the Nogales Police Department officers who responded told them that one of the most likely explanations for the incident was that an ultralight aircraft smuggling marijuana into Arizona from Mexico had accidentally let part of its load go early before dropping the rest further north of the border.
Bill Donnelly said that scenario made sense to him, adding that flying just one bundle seems like “an awful lot of risk for a little reward...”
“Thank God it didn’t land on our house,” he said. “Or over one of the kids’ rooms.”
"Falling drug bundle pierces carport, crushes doghouse"
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Guards at the La Reforma jail near San Jose, Costa Rica caught this homing pigeon as it flew into the prison carrying a bag of cocaine and marijuana. Read the rest
National Geographic reporter Bryan Christy commissioned two fake elephant tusks embedded with GPS, then planted them to track ivory smuggling routes from the Central African Republic into Sudan. Read the rest
Police in Spain found 200 pounds of cocaine stashed in hollow pineapples that arrived on a ship from Central America. From a statement released by the interior ministry of Spain:
"Among the thousands of fresh pineapples inside the containers, they found fruit that had been hollowed out and stuffed with drugs and then covered with a yellow wax that simulated the color of pineapple pulp."
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Border cops at Canada's Montreal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport searched a passenger's suitcase and found three pumpkins stuffed with 4.4 pounds of cocaine. Trick or treat. (CNN) Read the rest
Okay, which of you all just got busted for smuggling narwhal tusks? Fess up. It was either one of you, somebody from Reddit, or both, right?
Image: N is for narwhal - finished, a Creative Commons Attribution (2.0) image from notahipster's photostream Read the rest
Drug cartels are building their own diesel submarines in the jungles of South America
. A recently caught version wasn't fully submersible—the engine needed to bring in air via a snorkel that stuck out above the waterline—but it did have a range of 3000 miles. (Via Mo Costandi) Read the rest
Joseph O'Leary writes: "U.S. officials on Friday seized the skeleton of a Tyrannosaurus dinosaur
that Mongolia wants returned on suspicion that it was smuggled to the United States from the Gobi desert." Read the rest