A group of unusual Asian immigrants, smuggled into the US by unscrupulous criminals, has been returned to its country of origin following an investigation by federal immigration and security operatives.
The AP reports that US Attorney Preet Bharara announced the repatriation of no less than 18 distinguished Mongolians this week, following a joint operation by US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the New York office of Homeland Security Investigations.
The Mongolians in question were all long deceased and fossilised dinosaurs, "illegally poached and smuggled out of the Asian country between 2005 and 2012", according to the AP.
Reportedly the repatriated remains included "two Tyrannosaurus bataar skeletons, a dinosaur egg and two skeletons of Gallimimus".
Aiding the feds in their investigation was rogue private sector paleontologist Eric Prokopi, who had audaciously smuggled an entire tyrannosaur skeleton into the States before reassembling it and selling it for more than a million dollars. However the illicit tyrannosaur was later seized by the federales and Prokopi was cuffed. He pled guilty to charges and cut a deal, apparently turning stool-pigeon and leading the heat to "many skeletons they did not know about". He was given three months in prison recently.
Bharara apparently couldn't resist the temptation, announcing the dino repatriations, to say:
"This is a historic event for the US Attorney's office, in addition to being a pre-historic event." ®