Airport Officials Want $500,000 for a Violin - as part of the news series by GeoBeats.
Going through airport security is not fun and unknown individuals rifling through personal belongings can be uncomfortable.
One Japanese woman going through German customs encountered a difficult situation. Following a performance, the professional violinist tried to get through the gates of Frankfurt Airport when she was stopped by customs officials on August 16th. Officers focused on her violin, worth $1.2 million which she uses for work. They demanded 190,000 Euros for duty charges, but with fines and penalties, the total amount came to 380,000 Euros, which is nearly $500,000.
Officers seized the expensive instrument, because the woman did not have documentation regarding the initial purchase when she was going through security. She claims that the needed documents were given to personnel the next day but she has yet to receive the violin back. She states, “In all the touring I have done, this is the first time I have ever been treated this way. It is as if part of my body has been taken away from me”.
What do you think, were the custom officials right to seize the instrument?