Frozen Bear Parts Seized; 2 Charged

Two men have been charged with illegal possession of bear parts for commercial use after authorities seized $11,000 worth of the parts, the California Department of Fish and Game announced Wednesday.

"This is the biggest catch of illegal possession in sometime," department spokesman Curt Taucher said.

Last March, 52 people were arrested after a two-year statewide probe turned up $105,000 in bear organs and parts. Gall bladders and sexual organs are reportedly in demand in Asian communities for medicinal or sexual enhancement purposes, Taucher said.

The shipment was intercepted at the Los Angeles International Airport last Thursday. The ice chest contained 27 bear gall bladders, 36 claws and 5 sets of sexual organs.

Ji Soo Kim, of Los Angeles, and Hal Glen Taron, of Canada, were arrested as they allegedly tried to pick up the delivery. Taron had mailed the shipment from his hometown in Canada, officials said.

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