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Government Seizes Dinosaur Sold By Dallas-Based Auction

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NEW YORK (AP)The U.S. government has seized a dinosaur skeleton in New York City that it says was unjustly taken from Mongolia.

The crates holding the Tyrannosaurus bataar fossil were held at a Queens storage facility. The seizure was carried out Friday.

A Florida man, Eric Prokopi, says he legitimately obtained the specimen he refers to as “Ty.”

Prokopi says he put it together at great expense before it was sold by a Dallas-based auction house for more than $1 million.

The sale is contingent on the outcome of litigation. The government sued earlier this week to seize the dinosaur for a return to Mongolia.

The head paleontologist with New York’s American Museum of Natural History, Mark Norell, said Friday that the fossil should be returned quickly to Mongolia.

(©2012 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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