A man was arrested at JFK Airport on Monday after authorities discovered he had 35 live finches concealed inside plastic hair curlers that he had smuggled from Guyana and intended to use in singing competitions in Brooklyn and Queens.
Fox News reported that “Kevin Andre McKenzie is just the latest alleged would-be songbird smuggler busted using the hair-accessory method to bring in the coveted creatures.” McKenzie was caught with the birds, each stuffed inside an individual roller with a mesh cloth covering the sides and then concealed inside his clothing.
U.S. Customs and Border Patrol intercepted McKenzie after he deplaned from his flight from Georgetown, Guyana, Fox reported. He allegedly told authorities that he had been offered $3,000 to smuggle the birds.
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He was charged with the illegal importation of wildlife and was released on a $25,000 bond, authorities said. If convicted, McKenzie faces up to 20 years in prison.
Although there are American finches, the Guyanese variety is more desired