You can get a lot of cool things in libraries: books, of course, along with music, movies, and games at many locations. But Quebec's Alexis Vlachos took the library coolness factor up a notch when he added firearms to the inventory at the Haskell Free Library and Opera House, which straddles the national border between Derby Line, Vermont, and Stanstead, Quebec—not that library officials knew their business model had been expanded.
"On at least two occasions," notes the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Vermont, associates of Vlachos stashed "several firearms contained in small backpacks inside the trashcan of the library bathroom." Vlachos "entered the library from Quebec [to] retrieve the firearms from the bathroom" and then "transported the firearms to Quebec, where he sold many of them."
Vlachos is out of business, at least for the moment, and behind bars. But his enterprising smuggling operation is a wonderful illustration of the opportunities for making a buck that restrictive laws always create, writes J.D. Tuccille. It also illustrates the valuable role porous borders play in undermining those laws.
Photo Credit: modified from Haskell Free Library & Opera House/Facebook