We can picture the scene perfectly: Two guys on the way home from a trip to lovely Vancouver approaching the U.S./Canadian border. Suddenly, there’s a current of fear when guards search the car and inform them they’re smugglers. Each man pictures the other cackling evilly while shoving drugs or laundered money into a secret compartment in the car. But wait! It’s just illegal candy with a toy inside. Whew.
Two Seattle men ran afoul of U.S. contraband laws after their trip across the border. They say they had no idea they were doing anything wrong or turning themselves into smugglers when they purchased Kinder Eggs, reports KOMO News. The chocolate eggs come with a little toy inside, and are banned in the U.S. for containing a “non-nutritive object.”
The two men had decided to bring home treats for their friends and family, and picked up six of the eggs.
“We packed it in the back of the car because we weren’t going to eat them,” said one man.
Guards searched the car at the border, and notified the men that they were now accused smugglers.
“He said, ‘Are you aware kinder eggs are illegal in the United States and carry a $2,500 fine per egg?’ And I actually laughed,” said the other. That would be $15,000, for harmless chocolate eggs.
They spent over two hours trying to convince officers in a border detention center that they hadn’t meant to do anything wrong, before getting off with a warning.
“They wasted our time,” said one. “They wasted the money spent on the agents to do this and there are other cars that went through without checking them at all.”
Customs and Border Protection seized 25,000 Kinder Eggs in 2011. Rules be damned — we need our chocolate and our cheap, tiny toys!