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A giant Aldabra tortoise stolen from Madras Crocodile Centre: Insiders suspected

The theft of Aldabra tortoise from the crocodile park at Mahabalipuram, near Chennai, is suspected to be an insider job. One tortoise is worth over Rs 10 lakh in the international market. The Aldabra has a life span of up to 150 years. The largest size seen is 1.5 metres in length and 200 kg in weight.

CHENNAI, Dec 31: A giant Aldabra tortoise, said to be the second largest in the world, has been stolen from the crocodile park at Mahabalipuram, 56 km south of Chennai, in Tamil Nadu.

It is reported that the theft took place over a month ago but it has come to public notice only a few days ago.

The missing Aldabra is said to be around 80-100 kg in weight and 50 years old. An Aldabra is estimated to be worth over Rs 10 lakh in the international market. There are superstitious beliefs of medical benefits attributed to Aldabra.

The crocodile park is known as the Madras Crocodile Bank Trust Centre for Herpetology. The park had four Aldabra giant tortoises, its zoological name being Aldabrachelys Gigantea.

The police have registered a case and investigation is going on. The employees are being questioned as the Aldabra is too huge to be carried away easily without being noticed. The police have narrowed down the time of theft as November 11-12 night. There is no data on any of the CCTVs. This is suspected to be an insider job.

The Aldabra tortoise has a life span of up to 150 years. The largest size seen is 1.5 metres in length and 200 kg in weight.

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