Spanish police confiscate 683 pounds of contraband eels at Madrid airport

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A giant amount of young eels - 683 pounds to be precise - were confiscated by Spanish police this week before they were smuggled out of the country and shipped to Asia.

The Civil Guard announced Saturday that officers and customs agents at Madrid–Barajas international airport impeded two shipments of eels during the past week.

The agents discovered 551 pounds of young eels hidden in packages labeled as carrying barnacles destined for Vietnam. Officials later found four bags of the slimy fish weighing about 132 pounds destined for Hong Kong.

The European Union prohibits the import or export of the European eels, which is considered a species at risk of becoming endangered without trade controls.

The Civil Guard released a video on Twitter showing the small eels in bags before dumping the fish into the Oiartzun and Oria rivers.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.