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NYC man who smuggled rhino horns gets 3 years

December 6, 2013

NEW YORK (AP) — A New York City antiques dealer who pleaded guilty to conspiracy for smuggling artifacts made from rhinoceros horns from the U.S. to China and Hong Kong has been sentenced to three years in prison, plus three years’ supervised release.

Wang Qiang, also known as Jeffrey Wang, was sentenced in Manhattan federal court Thursday. He pleaded guilty in August to smuggling Asian artifacts made of ivory and rhino horns in violation of wildlife trafficking laws.

Rhinos are an endangered species, and elephant populations are diminishing because of ivory hunting.

Authorities say the 34-year-old faked U.S. Customs documents on packages containing the artifacts. They say they also seized ivory carvings from his apartment.

An attorney for Wang didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

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