Minnesota professor accused of smuggling elephant ivory

A philosophy professor at St. Cloud State University is accused of conspiring to smuggle rhinoceros horns and elephant ivory out of the U.S. and into China.

Yiwei (EE'-way) Zheng was indicted by a federal grand jury on charges including smuggling and making a false statement to agents.

The Star Tribune reports Zheng was arrested Tuesday by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service agents in St. Cloud.  Zheng appeared in court, surrendered his passport and was released on $25,000 unsecured bond.

The indictment alleges Zheng conspired with two unnamed co-conspirators in a scheme that ran from 2006 through 2011.

According to the indictment, the black rhinoceros is listed as an engendered species and international trade in elephant ivory is largely banned.

A university spokesman said he can't comment due to the investigation.