US returns dinosaur fossil, ancient artifacts to China

/ 08:11 AM December 11, 2015

WASHINGTON, United States—The United States returned a dinosaur fossil to China Thursday believed to be about 120 million years old, as well as a trove of ancient cultural artifacts, US customs officials said.

“It’s a great pleasure to welcome home these 22 Chinese artifacts and one fossil given back by the United States. These treasures are symbols of ancient China civilization and of mother nature,” Ambassador Cui Tiankai told a ceremony at the Chinese embassy.


The microraptor fossil was falsely manifested as a “craft rock” and later as a “fossil replica” to conceal its true contents when it was illegally imported to the United States, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials said.

Among the artifacts ICE returned to the Chinese government were jade disks, bronze trays and other items dating back as far as 1600 BCE.


The fossil and treasures were seized in investigations that saw two people in the United States convicted and fined.

Since 2007, US authorities have repatriated more than 8,000 items to more than 30 countries.

“In returning these items today, ICE rights a great wrong for the people of China,” said ICE deputy director Daniel Ragsdale.

“Fossils and treasures like these will always be targeted by bad actors, but we continue to investigate these crimes and repatriate them to their rightful owners.”


Mammoth tusk unearthed in Idaho; skeleton sought

Hints of life on what was thought to be desolate early Earth


TOPICS: Archeology, China, Diplomacy, History, US
Read Next
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.
View comments

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.

© Copyright 1997-2020 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.