Japanese duo caught leaving with lizards

Western Australian authorities have stopped two Japanese men from smuggling 30 lizards out of the country.

The men were caught with 28 shingleback lizards, an unspecified skink and a bearded dragon in their checked baggage at Perth International Airport.

It is believed the reptiles could have been worth about $130,000 on the black market.

Rick Dawson from the Department of Parks and Wildlife says the lizards were taken from all over the state including Rottnest Island and Shark Bay.

Under the current Western Australian state act the men face a maximum fine of $38,000, at $4,000 per incident.

State Environment Minister Albert Jacob indicated his interest in updating the Wildlife Conservation Act to establish harsher penalties.



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