TAIPEI: A Taiwanese man was barred from leaving Vietnam after he was caught boarding with a large number of military weapons at Hochiminh city International Airport.
On August 20, Customs officials at Tan Son Nhat Airport stopped a 31-year-old Taiwanese man to check his luggage after he had acted suspiciously. In the luggage, police uncovered 79 new handguns, two military transmitters, a gas mask, used NATO military uniforms, and several rounds of AR15 ammunition and M79 grenades.
He is now still held and waiting further questioning by the police. It is illegal to import or export military equipment into or out of Vietnam. The penalty for trafficking or trading weapons ranges from one year to a life sentence.
Despite the risks, customs officers have foiled various attempts to smuggle guns and bullets to and from the U.K., the U.S., and Turkey in recent years, as well as nearby countries such as Cambodia, South Korea, and Thailand.