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Vancouver man fined $18,000 for trying to smuggle 19 live turtles into Canada

In this Dec. 16, 2014 file photo, baby diamondback terrapin turtles swim in a container at the Marine Academy of Technology and Environmental Science in Manahawkin, N.J. A Vancouver man has been ordered to pay $18,000 after pleading guilty to attempting to smuggle 19 live turtles across the U.S.-Canada border, including diamondback terrapins.
In this Dec. 16, 2014 file photo, baby diamondback terrapin turtles swim in a container at the Marine Academy of Technology and Environmental Science in Manahawkin, N.J. A Vancouver man has been ordered to pay $18,000 after pleading guilty to attempting to smuggle 19 live turtles across the U.S.-Canada border, including diamondback terrapins. AP Photo/Wayne Parry

A Vancouver man’s attempt to smuggle 19 live turtles into Canada has cost him an $18,000 fine, Environment Canada said Monday.

Li Wan was caught with the turtles at the U.S.-Canada Border on Jan. 27, 2018, after failing to declare them.

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1,529 turtles discovered inside alleged smuggler’s luggage
1,529 turtles discovered inside alleged smuggler’s luggage

The turtles were made up of 16 different species, the ministry said in a release, six of which are listed as endangered in the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).

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Those species require a permit to be imported into Canada. They include spotted pond turtles and diamondback terrapins.

READ MORE: Snakes in socks? Smuggling of exotic animals keeps Canadian authorities busy

The turtles were seized from Wan at the time of the incident and were forfeited to the Crown.

Wan pleaded guilty to the smuggling attempt on May 6 and was ordered to pay the fine under the Wild Animal and Plant Protection and Regulation of International and Interprovincial Trade Act.

WATCH: (Aired July 4, 2017) Rare endangered turtle found wandering through Burnaby

Rare endangered turtle found wandering through Burnaby
Rare endangered turtle found wandering through Burnaby

The ministry said the penalty will go towards its environmental damages fund, which is used to pay for projects that protect or benefit the environment.

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Environment Canada is asking anyone who witnesses a wildlife crime to report it to police or Crime Stoppers.