With the sharp spike in security and body check at the airport, one would assume that the days of ‘smuggling’ would long be over. But turns out that some still attempt to smuggle goods to evade taxes. Like this group of South Korean women. Seven South Korean women hid around 40 blocks of gold in their rectums. The tourists, all in their 50s and 60s, were caught out at customs at Chubu International Airport, Japan. The incident occurred last month, when X-rays revealed each of them was carrying at least five metal objects in her abdomen. The Asahi Shimbun reported that each block weighed in at some 200 grams.
Reportedly, all the seven women had flown from Incheon International Airport in South Korea. The objects revealed by the X-ray were found to be roundish-shaped blocks of gold sealed inside transparent bags. Each woman had hidden between five and eight items weighing about 200 grams each, which were confiscated by customs inspectors. The Daily Mail reports that the women will get their gold back if they stump up a fine for smuggling and attempting to avoid paying the consumption tax. Government figures state that there has been a sharp spike in gold smuggling cases in Japan. This has happened since the time the ‘consumption tax’, which includes transactions in goods and services, was hiked by 3 percent in 2014.
Between July 2016 and June 2017, nationwide tax evasion rose by 40 percent, totalling 870 million yen (£5.794 million) in just twelve months, states the Daily Mail. There have been 467 cases of attempted smuggling and tax evasion in that time, or a 60 percent increase. Of these, three-fourths of the cases caught involved attempts at smuggling gold by hiding it externally around the person. Some cases involved hiding gold among accessories or inside luggage handle. Staff at the Chubu Airport, in Tokoname, state that women getting caught hiding gold bars in their rectum was an unusual case.