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Jan 1 - Dinosaur Dispute: Florida Man Pleads Guilty To Smuggling Fossils


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 Jan 1 - Dinosaur Dispute: Florida Man Pleads Guilty To Smuggling Fossils
topic by Most Hated - 01-01-2013, 02:35 AM


Dinosaur Dispute: Florida Man Pleads Guilty To Smuggling Fossils



A dinosaur dispute has ended in a Florida fossils dealer pleading guilty to smuggling charges.

38-year-old Eric Prokopi (below) has offered to give up a dinosaur skeleton worth $1 million for its return to Mongolia. The skeleton was seized by US customs officials earlier this year.

Prokopi has said he will surrender the 70 million-year-old Tyrannosaurus bataar skeleton (above) and give up his claims to six other dinosaurs and various other bones as part of a deal with prosecutors. In return, the prosecution has said it will recommend leniency from charges that can result in a potential prison sentence of up to 17 years.

In Manhattan Federal Court on Thursday, prosecutors read out what they described as “[one of] the larger dinosaur shopping lists you’ll see today.”

Assistant US Attorney Martin S. Bell noted that a second near-complete Tyrannosaurus skeleton was discovered at Prokopi’s Gainesville, Florida home, and a third is suspected to be in Great Britain.

The dinosaur dispute began when the US government accused Prokopi of illegally smuggling bones into the country from Mongolia, before a$sembling them into a complete skeleton and selling them at auction for $1.05 million. The government said Prokopi attempted to fool customs officials by mislabeling the various shipments of dinosaur bones as reptile bones from Great Britain.

A release from US Attorney Preet Bharara read:

“Fossils and ancient skeletal remains are part of the fabric of a country’s natural history and cultural heritage, and black marketers like Prokopi who illegally export and sell these wonders, steal a slice of that history. We are pleased that we can now begin the process of returning these prehistoric fossils to their countries of origin.”

Prokopi remains free on bail pending a sentencing scheduled for April 25.


6 comments for "Jan 1 - Dinosaur Dispute: Florida Man Pleads Guilty To Smuggling Fossils"


 01-02-2013, 06:39 AMaway - #2
ima80baby 32 heat pts32

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$5,297 | POWERFUL
Yeah you know dinosaur fossil smuggling is big business. I'm happy to see the feds care enough to do something about it.
 01-02-2013, 07:23 AMaway - #3
blacdood 90 heat pts90

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$3,298 | POWERFUL
don't know if i should hate or congratulate.
 01-02-2013, 05:39 PMaway - #4
360crazy 7 heat pts

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$2,418 | 0
Man this ni##a found those bones. They're his!
 01-02-2013, 06:21 PMaway - #5
weed 24 heat pts24

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$727 | 12778236
Florida man? Ok...
 01-02-2013, 07:09 PMaway - #6
the player 9 heat pts

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$14,367 | POWERFUL
im conditioned to automatically click on any Florida related thread after 2012...







 


 



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