Turkiye : American arrested with 1,500 scorpions and spiders in his suitcase Turkiye : American arrested with 1,500 scorpions and spiders in his suitcase

Turkiye : American arrested with 1,500 scorpions and spiders in his suitcase

Turkiye : American arrested with 1,500 scorpions and spiders in his suitcase

A curator at the American Museum of Natural History was arrested in Istanbul on Monday after allegedly trying to smuggle samples of spiders and scorpions, Turkish media reported.

Lorenzo Prendini, an arachnid expert at the prestigious New York-based institute, was arrested by police at Istanbul airport while trying to take some 1,500 samples outside the country, several media reported.

A video published by the IHA news agency showed anti-smuggling agents searching his carry-on bag and removing zip-lock plastic bags that appeared to contain dead spiders and scorpions.

They also reportedly found liquid samples of venom in plastic bottles.

The official Anadolu news agency reported that Prendini was arrested for allegedly trying to smuggle endemic species.

The museum's website lists South African-born Prendini as curator of its collections of spiders, scorpions, centipedes and centipedes, as well as a professor at the Richard Gilder Graduate School.

His research on spiders and scorpions has taken him to more than 30 countries and he has published numerous scientific articles on the subject, according to the museum.

He also works in the biology department at the City University of New York.

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