Importing a Human Body as a Biological Specimen


Providing for urgent import from Israel of the body of a prominent physician and scientist bequeathed to Russian medical educational centres

Israeli specialised forwarding agent
Clinical study material logistics


A deceased man bequeathed his body to Russian medical centres for use in educational purposes.

While the body was expected to be received by his relatives in Russia, a customs broker declared the corpse as “Cargo 200” in accordance with the remains repatriation procedure – a mistake that made it impossible for the body to be further legally processed as demised.

Upon arrival of the body at an airport, customs authorities revealed a violation of the declaration procedure and found the documents presented to be insufficient to confirm the purpose of the importation.


The entire body was re-categorised as a biological specimen in a way similar to separate organs and, therefore, successfully registered by the customs authorities for the benefit of the recipients.

A new legal tool was found to resolve a unique situation outside the scope of conventional customs procedures only applicable to importation of separate body parts.