8 May 2013

Dinosaur skeleton returned to Mongolia

6:06 am on 8 May 2013

A 70 million year old dinosaur skeleton that was smuggled into the United States has been returned to Mongolia.

The dinosaur, which resembles a Tyrannosaurus Rex, was discovered in the Gobi Desert about eight years ago and taken to the US in pieces in March 2010.

A paleontologist reassembled the skeleton and sold it for more than $US1 million. In December, a Florida fossils dealer in December admitted smuggling the bones from Britain to the United States.

The BBC reports Mongolia has laws that protect fossils: they are the property of the state and their export is banned.

US Customs director John Morton said returning the skeleton was the right thing to do.