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Housewives caught smuggling iPads into China

Fourteen housewives, allegedly in possession of 88 iPads, as well as other gadgets, are detained while crossing the border from Hong Kong.

It's not easy being an iPad mule.

Unlike cocaine, you are severely limited as to where you might conceal your contraband. It's not as if you can slip one in the upper parts of, say, your mouth.

Some, therefore, might melt in sympathy at the plight of 14 housewives who were reportedly accosted by customs officials in Shenzhen, China, just across the border from the free-wheeling frenzy of Hong Kong.

How would you smuggle yours? CC Yutaka Tsutano/Flickr

According to the Wall Street Journal, the 14 ladies happened to be in possession of 88 iPads, as well as 340 cell phones

They were unable, it seems, to offer adequate explanations for the fact that, for example, one of the shipping shoppers, had 65 cell phones strapped to her person.

Some might have chosen to tell customs that this was a revolutionary new weight-loss experiment. However, these ladies seem not to have been so spontaneous.

They were reportedly among the increasing number of ordinary Chinese who are offered a mere $30 to ferry some of the free world's finest gadgetry into the controlled atmosphere of the People's Republic.

China has recently imposed taxes on Apple's magical and revolutionary product as it enters the country in the possession of excited new owners.

But this is surely unlikely to staunch the flow.

It is a fine and noble truth that the iPad has created a wonderfully refreshing excitement wherever there is a beating heart, a curious mind, and a twitching finger.

One can only wonder whether future Chinese smugglers--and there will be many--will find more ingenious ways of hiding their iPad haul.

Perhaps someone will begin a fashion trend for those mortar boards that students wear on their heads for graduation. It seems to me those would be a perfect hiding place for an iPad. Or three.