Capsules filled with the remains of dead human fetuses are being smuggled into South Korea from China, according to the Korea Customs Service. The pills are advertised as a stamina enhancement drug and are in high demand despite public health programs explaining that the pills are filled with bacteria and could cause serious health problems when taken.
The first reports of these human flesh pills were reported in South Korea in August 2011. From August 2011 to August 2012, security officials stopped 94 smuggling attempts that were attempting to bring in pills from China. Nearly 43,600 human flesh pills were seized in those incidents.
In the first eight months of 2013, the Korea Customs Service seized capsules in 25 smuggling attempts.
Smugglers attempt to avoid Customs by smuggling the pills in Chinese tourists luggage, in mobile phones, and are even using the postal service. One case in June involved the pills being mailed from the United States.
Source: Yonhap, “Smuggling of human flesh pills continues despite intensified crackdown: data,” Global Post, October 28, 2013.