U.S. Government Wants To Keep 300 Pairs Of Manolo Blahnik Shoes Made From Rare Species Of Snake

The federal government apparently has an eye for fashion: it wants to keep shipment of nearly 300 pairs of designer shoes made from an endangered species of snake that it got its hands on a few years ago.

In July 2013, the Department of the Interior and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service seized a shipment of Manolo Blahnik shoes worth an estimated $43,000 at John F. Kennedy International Airport, reports Courthouse News. If you aren’t familiar with the brand, watch any episode of Sex and the City and you’ll get the gist.

Though the shipment came in from Italy, the form that’s supposed to identify where the goods were produced and what animal skins were used to make them — called a “bill of lading” — didn’t provide the required information. It’s illegal to import products made from endangered species in the U.S.

According to the government, the shoes were made from skins of the dog-faced water snake, Cerberus rynchops, a species that’s been listed as endangered since 1973. Officials say the snake skins were used to make the shoes and were sent from China to Hong Kong, then to Italy and then the United States.

The government is now seeking to keep the shoes through the court system, though it’s unclear from the Courthouse News report for what purpose — most likely to keep the shoes from going to the market, and not for any kind of crazy fashion party it’s intending to throw.

Feds Want to Keep Manolo Blahnik Shoes [Courthouse News]