Police discover kingsnake, tarantula in drug bust

Police arrested a Maldivian couple on Thursday night with drugs, a snake and a Mexican red-kneed tarantula from Henveiru Lucky Shade house in Male’.

Police raided the residence with a search warrant at about 11:15pm and found the drugs and pets in the couple’s room.

The albino banded California kingsnake was kept illegally as a pet, police said.

The couple – a 28-year-old man and 27-year-old woman – were taken into custody with a film canister containing illicit narcotics and a counterfeit US$100 note.

Police also revealed that the male suspect had a criminal record for drug-related offences.

The California kingsnake is not the first exotic animal discovered in a recent drug bust. Last week, police found a 4-feet long snake during a drug operation on the island of Himmafushi in Kaafu atoll.

The snake was reportedly a royal python – a non-venomous African species often kept as pets.

In a drug bust in the capital Male’ last January, police discovered a caged slow loris. The importation and sale of the endangered primate species is illegal in the country.

In November last year, police arrested three men from a residence in Male’ with 15 bottles of Finlandia vodka, 24 cans of beer and three snakes.

A police media official told Minivan News at the time that two of the snakes were of a dangerous species and were listed as contraband.