A stolen Venetian swivel gun from the 17th century was discovered earlier this week by customs agents in Boston.
Packed into a piece of heavy equipment, the canon-like weapon was not easy to spot at first.
“They had to get out torches and saws, it looks like the arm of an excavator so they had to get into this and buried inside that was the cannon,” C. Shane Campbell from Customs and Border Protection told WHDH.
Agents from Homeland Security got a tip that the antique gun was headed to the United States from Egypt on a container ship, but it was a needle in the haystack among the 55,000 containers that come into Boston’s port every year.
“Customs and Border Protections has a national targeting center which is down in Reston, Virginia which has a great job of vetting information from prior seizures for example, prior shipments. They’re able to put out intelligence reports which allows these inspectors to target specific ships and target specific containers,” Special Agent in Charge at HIS Boston Bruce Foucart told WHDH.
The stolen piece will return to Italy in January.