Smuggler gets busted with 44 second-hand seven year old Radeon RX 580 graphics cards

Smuggling budget gaming Radeon RX 580 GPUs into a country where they're already available might not sound like the smartest idea, but hey.

1 minute & 19 seconds read time

Smuggling video cards into China is understandable, considering the current trade restrictions and the U.S. flat-out banning the sale of the GeForce RTX 4090 to the region. However, smuggling a batch of second-hand seven-year-old GPUs is more of a stretch because you wouldn't think it would be worth trying to smuggle 44 Radeon RX 580 graphics cards through Chinese customs.

A man tried to smuggle 44 Radeon RX 580 GPUs into China and got caught, image credit: MyDrivers

A man tried to smuggle 44 Radeon RX 580 GPUs into China and got caught, image credit: MyDrivers

According to a new report on MyDrivers (via Tom's Hardware), Shanghai Pudong International Airport customs officers caught a passenger trying to sneak in a batch of old Radeon GPUs into the country. Based on the seizure image all 44 Radeon RX 580 GPUs look to be the same make and model, presumably used for crypto mining.

Naturally, this is a case of someone trying to avoid paying import fees by not declaring that they have a bunch of old graphics cards they will wipe down and sell for a quick profit.

Smuggling PC hardware into China is common, and a few stories like this have cropped up in the past year. There was one where a man got caught with 420 SSDs taped to their body and a bizarre case involving smugglers trying to transport live lobsters and decade-old NVIDIA Quadro GPUs into China.

As for these 44 Radeon RX 580 graphics cards, it's common practice for Chinese authorities to sell the confiscated goods at public auction. As for the card, the RX 580 is still a competent and popular budget GPU among gamers. However, it's starting to show its age when you compare its features and capabilities to modern Radeon products.

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Kosta is a veteran gaming journalist that cut his teeth on well-respected Aussie publications like PC PowerPlay and HYPER back when articles were printed on paper. A lifelong gamer since the 8-bit Nintendo era, it was the CD-ROM-powered 90s that cemented his love for all things games and technology. From point-and-click adventure games to RTS games with full-motion video cut-scenes and FPS titles referred to as Doom clones. Genres he still loves to this day. Kosta is also a musician, releasing dreamy electronic jams under the name Kbit.

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