CBP seizes caprine (goat) skull from Africa.

caprine skull

Image of seized caprine skull. Source: US CBP

Last week, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers in Tennessee seized a caprine skull from a shipment originating from the African country of Djibouti.

Shippers from Djibouti described the contents as “gift salt”, however, upon inspection, CBP found a salt-encrusted caprine skull with horns and tissue inside the skull. A goat-antelope is known as a caprine and are usually found in the mountains of Africa, Asia, North America and Europe.

Agriculture inspectors with the USDA seized the item because Djibouti is known to CBP as a country affected by foot and mouth diseases – a disease that was eradicated in the US in 1929.

While importers typically have a means to petition for a release of seized goods – given the nature of this shipment and the hazards posed to US livestock by foot and mouth disease, CBP destroyed the skull using “steam sterilization.”

If you have had any customs seizure or received a letter from the DOT, FDA, USDA, etc regarding seized goods, contact experienced customs seizure attorney David Hsu at attorney.dave@yahoo.com or by phone at 832.896.6288.

German metal producer claims CBP violated due process.

black sail ship on body of water

Photo by Albin Berlin on Pexels.com

This past Sunday, German metal manufacturer (Andritz Sundwig GMHB) claims the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) of violating its due process rights when U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) ordered the export of the company’s bug-infested cargo instead of allowing the shipment to be fumigated.

In an emergency complaint filed with the U.S. Court of International Trade, Andritz’s legal counsel (Scott Johnston and James Hurst of Givens & Johnston PLLC and Stacey L.Barnes of Kearney, McWilliams & Davis PLLC) claims CBP’s decision to require the cargo to be exported does not allow Andritz any administrative remedies or opportunities to appeal.

The filing with the CIT claims CBP denied Andritz’s request to fumigate its cargo after horntailed wasps were found in the wood packaging materials (WPM).

Upon notice of a pest infestation, Andrtiz hired fumigators and requested last Friday for CBP authorization to fumigate and separate the infested WPM. Unfortunately, CBP denied those requests and requested exportation of the cargo on Sunday.  In response, Andritz filed a temporary restraining order in addition to a request for declaratory relief along with a temporary protective order on Monday.

More updates will be posted as available.

If you have received an “Emergency Action Notification” from Customs regarding wood packaging materials and or pest infestation, contact attorney David Hsu for immediate assistance at 832-896-6288. Time is of the essence when an EAN is received, call or email attorney.dave@yahoo.com as soon as possible.

APHIS Recognizes Mexico as Free of Classical Swine Fever.

pig-alp-rona-furna-sow-63285.jpegClassical swine fever (CSF or sometimes referred to as hog cholera/swine fever/European swine fever) is a highly contagious viral disease of pigs. CSF used to be widespread but many countries had eradicated the disease until it was reintroduced in 1997-199 (CSF was eradicated in the US in the 1970’s). A 1997 outbreak of CSF in the Netherlands involved more than 400 herds and cost $2.3 billion dollars to eradicate with some 12 million pigs killed.

While eradicated in North America, the US is also not immune to the risk as CSF is still endemic in South and Central America. Because of this, the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) previously classified imports of live swine, swine genetics, pork and pork products from Mexico as risky following a 2015 site review.

However, at the request of Mexico’s government, the USDA APHIS has now determined that the risk of CSF through Mexican imports of live swine, swine genetics, pork and pork products is very low. As such, these items can now be saefly imported into the US as long as the imports follow APHIS’ import regulations.

Importations of live swine, swine genetics, pork and pork products must (1) be accompanied by a certificate issued by a Mexican government veterinary officer, (2) must come from swine raised and slaughtered in regions APHIS considers CSF free.

If your company would like more information regarding importation of swine and swine products or other general USDA APHIS concerns, please do not hesitate to contact David Hsu at 832.896.6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com.