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Carnegie Museum officials: Murrysville doctor's donated crocs, ostrich legally obtained

| Thursday, Aug. 6, 2015, 1:03 p.m.
Dr Jan C.  Seski of Murrysville is accused of killing a lion in an illegal hunt in April.
Allegheny Health Network
Dr Jan C. Seski of Murrysville is accused of killing a lion in an illegal hunt in April.

Murrysville oncologist Jan Seski followed the proper protocols in donating four animals to the Carnegie Museum of Natural History, officials there said Thursday.

The government of Zimbabwe has accused Seski of using a bow and arrow to poach a lion outside Hwange National Park, where lion hunting is not allowed.

In light of the allegations, officials at the Pittsburgh museum reviewed the specimens Seski donated over a period of years and all related documentation. Seski's most recent donation was made in 2007, said Betsy Momich, museum spokeswoman.

Seski's contributions of two Nile crocodiles and an ostrich, all from Tanzania, were obtained legally according to U.S. and international laws and conventions, Momich said.

Seski had the necessary export permits, U.S. Department of Agriculture Fish and Wildlife import permits and documentation from the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, Momich said. Seski's donation of an American alligator did not require import or export permits.

Museum officials said earlier this week that if the animals had not been hunted legally, they would be returned to Seski.

Greg Linsin, an attorney for Seski, declined to comment.

Through Linsin, Seski has denied the allegations by the Zimbabwean government that he illegally shot and killed a lion in April on land where lion hunting is banned. No charges have been filed.

Seski has said he participated in a hunt in July — not April — during which he lawfully hunted and took a lion. He said he had the necessary permits, promptly notified Zimbabwean authorities and provided them all paperwork and information required.

Kari Andren is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-850-2856 or kandren@tribweb.com.

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