Dinosaur might be more like Frankenstein: NY judge
NEW YORK (AP) - A federal judge expressed surprise Wednesday that a dinosaur skeleton seized by the United States (US) government is a composite of several ancient creatures, calling it a "kind of Frankenstein model of a dinosaur."
United States District Judge Kevin Castel said it seemed much more needs to be learned about the 70 million-year-old Tyrannosaurus bataar skeleton, known as Ty, before it can be carted off to Mongolia, where the US government says it originated and belongs.
With the judge's approval, US agents swooped into a storage facility in June and snatched the fossil after the government insisted it was a rare specimen that could only have originated in Mongolia. The fossil's seizure seemed urgent after it was sold by Dallas-based auction house Heritage Auctions for US$1.05 million (S$1.31 million).
Attorney Michael McCullough argued the skeleton should be returned to Gainesville, Florida, fossils dealer Eric Prokopi, who says he assembled dinosaur pieces that were worth only tens of thousands of dollars into a nearly intact skeleton worth much more.