- Associated Press - Friday, October 30, 2015

LOS ANGELES (AP) - A Peruvian man who tried to smuggle 200 orchids through Los Angeles International Airport in his luggage has pleaded guilty to illegally trading in a protected species.

Victor Manuel Arias Cucho of Lima entered the plea Wednesday in federal court. He was given probation and ordered to pay a $7,500 fine.

Prosecutors say Cucho had attended an orchid trade show in Sydney, Australia and was heading back to Peru last month when he had a layover at LAX.

Authorities say Cucho didn’t have the proper documents to bring orchids into the United States so he hid them in his luggage and declared to Customs that he wasn’t carrying any plants.

They were discovered during a secondary inspection.

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