Conflict & Justice

Suspected Mongolian Dinosaur Skeleton Seized in New York

Our Geo Quiz features an international case of alleged dinosaur rustling.

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US officials have seized four wooden crates from a warehouse in New York City containing the skeleton of a 24-foot long meat-eating dinosaur.

Authorities believe the 70 million year old bones were smuggled out of Mongolia, a country that has very strict laws governing its cultural heritage.

The dinosaur bones surfaced at an auction house last month and have since drawn the attention of Mongolia's president who's calling for the skeleton to be returned to Mongolia.

For the Geo Quiz we're looking for the name of a vast desert, one of Asia's largest. It covers the southern part of Mongolia and parts of China. Paleontologists consider it a treasure trove for dinosaur bones, especially the kind that were seized.

Can you name it?
Paleontologists say the bones that were seized by US feds are that of a Tyrannosaurus bataar that's only found in Mongolia. Authorities now suspect this Tyrannosaurus-related dinosaur skeleton was smuggled out of Mongolia's Gobi Desert, the answer to our Geo Quiz.

Mark Norell is paleontologist at the American Museum of Natural History who helped bring attention to this case of alleged dinosaur smuggling.

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    Tyrannosaurus bataar skeleton that was seized by the US Department of Homeland Security (Photo: Heritage Auctions)

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    Tyrannosaurus bataar skeleton (Photo: Heritage Auctions)