Smuggled dinosaur eggs returned to Romania

November 17, 2011

Three unique dwarf dinosaur eggs that were stolen and smuggled to Italy, were returned to Romania on Wednesday, the interior ministry said.

"The fossils disappeared from Romania between 2004 and 2005, ministry spokesman Marius Militaru told AFP. "They are from a species of dwarf dinosaur that was unique in the world and lived on our country's territory."

The eggs date to the , about 67 million years ago, and were stolen from a fossil site at Tustea, which is on UNESCO's list of protected areas in Transylvania.

Three Romanians are being investigated for trafficking.

Prosecutors have valued the fossils, found in the possession of an Italian collector after a joint investigation by Romania and Italy, at hundreds of thousands of euros, Mediafax news agency said.

Militaru said the eggs will be exhibited at Bucharest's Grigore Antipa museum of natural history.

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