U.S. returns dinosaur fossils to Mongolia - KMSP-TV

U.S. returns dinosaur fossils to Mongolia

Posted: Updated:
NEW YORK (MYFOXNY) -

Dinosaur jokes out of the mouth of a United States attorney celebrated the return of oviraptors, hadrosaurs, and one Tyrannosaurus bataar skeleton to the good people of Mongolia.

"This is a historic event for the U.S. Attorney's Office, in addition to being a prehistoric event," said U.S Attorney Preet Bharara. "So, how did we get here? First there was a meteor."

Then 65 million years later in 2012, an attorney blocked the sale of this monster's skeleton for $1 million.

Homeland Security and Immigration and Customs Enforcement then determined said fossils had left Mongolia and arrived in America illegally.

"The act of smuggling an eight-foot-tall, 24-foot-long Tyrannosaurus skeleton past U.S. Customs officers at any airport in the country," said Jim Hayes of ICE. "Of course that's not what happened."

The smuggler broke this predator's skeleton down into hundreds of shipments. So fully deconstructed was this beast that when the United States returned it to Mongolia the smuggler had to preside over its reassembly. It now stands on display in the country where it died 70 million years ago.

"Fossil looting is a huge problem worldwide," said paleontologist Dr. Mark Norell. He said that for nearly half of the 1,200 dinosaur species we've identified we have only one specimen. So, this batch headed back to Mongolia to help that nation open its first natural history museum qualifies as extremely rare.

One graveyard of the oviraptor: "It's one piece of rock with four or five beasts from the Cretacious period," Bharara said.

One oviraptor egg: "Should it hatch in the way that the eggs from Jurassic Park did, you should know that was not part of the plan," he said.

And plenty of Jurassic period jokes we thought went extinct back in the 1990s predated the signing over of these prehistoric remains to the new rulers of the part of the world where these beasts used to reign.

 

  • Manhattan NewsManhattan NewsMore>>

  • 2 U.S. marshals, 1 NYPD detective wounded; fugitive killed in Manhattan

    2 U.S. marshals, 1 NYPD detective wounded; fugitive killed in Manhattan

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 8:27 AM EDT2014-07-29 12:27:36 GMT
    Two deputy U.S. marshals and an NYPD detective are expected to recover after they were seriously wounded in a shootout with a fugitive sexual assault suspect in the West Village in Manhattan, officials said. The shootout happened in smoke shop called Smoking Culture on West 4th Street near Jones Street.


    Two deputy U.S. marshals and an NYPD detective are expected to recover after they were seriously wounded in a shootout with a fugitive sexual assault suspect in the West Village in Manhattan, officials said. The shootout happened in smoke shop called Smoking Culture on West 4th Street near Jones Street.

  • NYC woman finds wedding dress lost after Sandy

    NYC woman finds wedding dress lost after Sandy

    When a New York City dry cleaners was destroyed by Superstorm Sandy, the only item to survive was Nicole Pagliaro's wedding dress. But her name was lost to owner Hector Pacheco, who reopened after more than a year and in a new location. Pagliaro had brought the dress to him after her 2012 wedding. When the storm swamped and shuttered the Staten Island store, she assumed it was lost. But two weeks ago, she took a different route to work and spotted it in the window.
    When a New York City dry cleaners was destroyed by Superstorm Sandy, the only item to survive was Nicole Pagliaro's wedding dress. But her name was lost to owner Hector Pacheco, who reopened after more than a year and in a new location. Pagliaro had brought the dress to him after her 2012 wedding. When the storm swamped and shuttered the Staten Island store, she assumed it was lost. But two weeks ago, she took a different route to work and spotted it in the window.
  • Earlier start to school day for hundreds of NYC schools

    Earlier start to school day for hundreds of NYC schools

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 7:45 AM EDT2014-07-29 11:45:37 GMT
    The school day will reportedly start earlier for students and staff of more than 450 schools in New York City starting in September. NYC Department of Education told the NY Daily News that the change in time is in compliance with the new union contract. It will allow for extra time after school for teacher training and parent-teacher conferences. 
    The school day will reportedly start earlier for students and staff of more than 450 schools in New York City starting in September. NYC Department of Education told the NY Daily News that the change in time is in compliance with the new union contract. It will allow for extra time after school for teacher training and parent-teacher conferences. 
Powered by WorldNow

KMSP-TV
11358 Viking Drive
Eden Prairie, MN 55344

Phone: (952) 944-9999
Fax: (952) 942-0455

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices