Police in South China's Guangdong Province seized an unregistered cargo ship on Sunday which was carrying illegal beef products destined to China from abroad via Southeastern Asian countries.
The Guangdong maritime patrol team found over 100 tons of frozen beef and cow intestines on the ship at Beibu Bay in the early morning on Sunday, with no crew in sight, Guangdong Maritime Police announced Saturday.
The frozen beef products, some of which had already gone bad, were wrapped in chicken feed packaging to circumvent inspection procedures, local police said.
The place of origin of the ship remains unknown, nor have they gone through any mandatory quarantine procedures, according to the maritime police.
The beef products were smuggled into China from abroad and through Southeast Asian countries by people hoping to make big profits, according to a local law enforcement official, since cow intestines are not popular items among foreign customers.
"The quality of the food is highly questionable," he added, "Some frozen products even came from infected areas."
The cargo ship and smuggled beef products have been confiscated by the local maritime law enforcement department, Guangdong police said.
It is the second time this month that the local maritime patrol teams took successful action against foreign beef smuggling.
The anti-smuggling actions are part of Guangdong police's efforts to implement the 2017 Guomenlijian Initiative, which focuses on cracking down smuggling.
Initiated and led by China's General Administration of Customs, the year-long initiative was launched on February 7 to combat smuggling of farm produce, resources intensive products, guns and drugs in the following years.