A strange insect in a shipment of Colombian fruit caused U.S. port
authorities to call an alert for a possible “agroterrorism” threat, U.S.
Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) said Wednesday.
The weevil, “never before seen in the United States”, was found during the routine inspection of a container ship that brought the Colombian fruit to Gulfort, Mississippi Monday, CBP spokeswoman Viriginia Dabbs told Spanish press agency EFE.
The bugs were examined by entomological experts from the Agriculture Department, who identified the little creatures as the Faustinus Rhomfiber Champion, family of the common weevil.
According to the CBP, no preventive measure is exaggerated because of the imminent “agroterrorism” threat.
“We face a new and dangerous dimension since the September 11 attacks (…) which makes the work of our agricultural specialists more crucial than ever,” CBP Operations Director in New Orleans, Robert C. Gómez said in a statement.
The ship, including its bananas and weevils, was sent back to Colombia.