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Man Admits to Smuggling Sea Cucumbers
NBC San Diego ^ | Monday, Mar 10, 2014 | Andie Adams

Posted on 03/16/2014 12:26:45 PM PDT by nickcarraway

The man pleaded guilty to a smuggling charge Thursday

A man has admitted to smuggling thousands of dollars’ worth of dried sea cucumbers into the U.S. from Mexico, according to federal officials. On Thursday, Cheng Zhuo Liu, 50, of Chula Vista, Calif. appeared in federal court in San Diego. Liu pleaded guilty to smuggling 100 pounds of the endangered species on Oct. 3, 2013 by hiding them in his Hyundai’s spare tire area, according to U.S. Attorney Laura Duffy.

That amount of sea cucumbers has a market value of between $5,000 and $10,000.

The marine animals are protected under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species, so those who import them into the U.S. need a permit.

Duffy said Liu admitted he didn’t have any permits.

A black market has grown around the illegal sea cucumber trade in Asia, where Duffy said a pound might sell for $300.

Liu agreed to forfeit the sea cucumber seized. He faces a maxiumum sentence of five years in prison and a $20,000 fine on June 9.

Dried sea cucumber is used in Chinese cuisine as hoi sam, as well as for medicinal purposes.

Smuggling the animals has become a problem in Indonesia, Japan, Sri Lanka and Mexico. In the Caribbean Sea off the Yucatan Peninsula, illegal harvesting has decimated the sea cucumber populations. Rival gangs have clashed for control of the harvest, according to the U.S. Attorney.

Sea cucumbers have long, leathery bodies and are found on the ocean flood worldwide. The species Liu had is typically found in the Pacific Coast of Mexico, Central and South America, the Biodiversity Heritage Library says.


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Food; Pets/Animals
KEYWORDS: crime

1 posted on 03/16/2014 12:26:45 PM PDT by nickcarraway
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To: nickcarraway

“I’m a little sea cucumber, short and stout.
This is my handle, and this is my snout!”


2 posted on 03/16/2014 12:30:39 PM PDT by Cicero (Marcus Tullius)
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To: nickcarraway
Sea cucumbers are rather interesting Echinoderms. Feeling threatened they release their intestines from their bodies. While the predator is eating them, they escape. Their intestines grow back within a few weeks.
3 posted on 03/16/2014 12:31:51 PM PDT by mware
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To: mware

Seems like there is more enforcement of sea cucumber smuggling from Mexico than enforcing smuggling illegal aliens.


4 posted on 03/16/2014 12:39:17 PM PDT by angry elephant (Endangered species in Seattle)
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To: nickcarraway

alright, I’ll say it...”Is that a sea cucumber in your pocket, or are you just happy to see me?”


5 posted on 03/16/2014 12:40:33 PM PDT by nuconvert ( Khomeini promised change too // Hail, Chairman O)
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To: nickcarraway
Image and video hosting by TinyPic
6 posted on 03/16/2014 12:43:02 PM PDT by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
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To: mware

Are these creatures being farmed off of the coast of Mexico, and is all this some goofy enviroweenie regulation paid for by big pocket Chinese Sea Cucumber monopolists?


7 posted on 03/16/2014 12:44:06 PM PDT by MrEdd (Heck? Geewhiz Cripes, thats the place where people who don't believe in Gosh think they aint going.)
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To: nickcarraway

If we have said it once, we have said it a thousand times, those dam people eat everything, and for the wrong reasons. Need severe penalties for this character. Make him an example.


8 posted on 03/16/2014 12:57:50 PM PDT by SgtHooper (If at first you don't succeed, skydiving is not for you.)
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To: nickcarraway

Is Lui a common name in Kalipornia??


9 posted on 03/16/2014 1:00:09 PM PDT by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans!)
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To: SgtHooper

Oh cmon its not like its a opossum, squirrel, pigeon, or a raccoon.


10 posted on 03/16/2014 1:01:02 PM PDT by driftdiver (I could eat it raw, but why do that when I have a fire.)
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To: nickcarraway

Is that a sea cucumber in your pants or......


11 posted on 03/16/2014 1:02:39 PM PDT by Puppage (You may disagree with what I have to say, but I shall defend to your death my right to say it)
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To: angry elephant
“Seems like there is more enforcement of sea cucumber smuggling from Mexico than enforcing smuggling illegal aliens.”

Apparently orientals aren't into eating mexicans yet.

12 posted on 03/16/2014 1:03:53 PM PDT by dalereed
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To: MrEdd

“What’r’ya infer?”

“Smuggling sea cucumbers.”

“Smugglin’ da cucumbers. ‘Zat whut’ther callin’it now?”


13 posted on 03/16/2014 1:06:13 PM PDT by BradyLS (DO NOT FEED THE BEARS!)
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To: nickcarraway

If we can stop sea cucumbers from entering , maybe someday we can send home all the Islamic islamonazis brought into USA these last few years?


14 posted on 03/16/2014 1:06:50 PM PDT by faithhopecharity ("H)
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To: nickcarraway

I like cucumbers and onions, with vinegar and a bit of sugar.


15 posted on 03/16/2014 1:23:51 PM PDT by caver (Obama: Home of the Whopper)
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To: caver
I like cucumbers and onions, with vinegar and a bit of sugar.

I was making up a batch today and discovered my wife had used all the vinegar cleaning the coffee machine. I don't use sugar. I use sea salt and celery seed instead.

16 posted on 03/16/2014 1:42:38 PM PDT by Starstruck (If my reply offends, you probably don't understand sarcasm or criticism...or do.)
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To: nickcarraway
Still trying to determine how Asian Silver Carp suddenly appeared in several midwest rivers where they have taken over from the native species.
Some think it was deliberately introduced since it is a food fish in parts of far east. BTW-Some of these fish are huge and can jump out of the water fairly high.
17 posted on 03/16/2014 1:55:17 PM PDT by Larry381 (It don't matter what you say.....I'm offended!)
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To: Starstruck

Sea salt and celery seed...., sounds good, I will try it out.

I did make some egg salad today with some celery seed. The wife doesn’t add the celery seed.


18 posted on 03/16/2014 1:56:51 PM PDT by caver (Obama: Home of the Whopper)
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To: caver
Sea salt and celery seed...., sounds good, I will try it out.

Since the sugar you use probably negates some of the sour, I will tell you to use some water to cut the vinegar. Also when my tomatoes come in I like to slice and put them in a bowl and add cucumbers and some of the juice and let them marinate for an hour or so. Whoa!

19 posted on 03/16/2014 2:11:10 PM PDT by Starstruck (If my reply offends, you probably don't understand sarcasm or criticism...or do.)
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To: Revolting cat!; Slings and Arrows

C is for cucumber.

20 posted on 03/16/2014 3:11:50 PM PDT by a fool in paradise (The Texas judge's decision was to pave the way for same sex divorce for two Massachusetts women.)
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To: nuconvert
alright, I’ll say it...”Is that a sea cucumber in your pocket, or are you just happy to see me?”

Dang! Beat me to it!

21 posted on 03/16/2014 4:35:59 PM PDT by JaguarXKE (1973: Reporters investigate All the President's Men. 2013: Reporters ARE all the President's men)
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To: a fool in paradise

Wow the prices in the background really date the movie, don’t they?


22 posted on 03/16/2014 7:39:21 PM PDT by Some Fat Guy in L.A. (Still bitterly clinging to rational thought despite it's unfashionability)
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To: Some Fat Guy in L.A.

Let’s raise the minimum wage to double digits and give people more spending money! < /sarc >


23 posted on 03/17/2014 6:17:36 AM PDT by a fool in paradise (The Texas judge's decision was to pave the way for same sex divorce for two Massachusetts women.)
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