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Fugitive Crocodile Caught By Gaza Police
A crocodile, which has been on the loose for two years, has been recaptured by police in the Gaza Strip.
It took an internet search, shark nets and two weeks of floating in a sewage pond before the reptile was rounded up, officers said, proudly revealing their part in the mission.
The 1.75-metre (5ft 9in) crocodile fled his zoo enclosure two years ago and crawled about a half-a-mile down the road to a large sewage pit near the northern Gaza Strip town of Umm al-Naser, said Lieutenant Colonel Samih al Sultan, who led the hunt.
"He had a lot of spirit in him. He wanted to be free," Colonel al Sultan said, as he watched the crocodile settling into its new home in a pond with four other crocodiles in a newly-built zoo in nearby Beit Lahiya.
"We hope he lives a good life here with his wives," he said.
Police said they used Google to search for tips on how to hunt down the beast.
Relieved residents said they had not wanted to leave their houses in the evenings, fearing the crocodile which, they said, ate their ducks and goats.
"We were afraid he would eat us," said farmer Hassan Mohammed of Umm al-Nasser.
The then much smaller crocodile was initially brought into the blockaded Palestinian territory four years ago through a smuggling tunnel under the Egypt-Gaza border.
It is not clear how it managed to escape from the zoo.