Thieves Steal Penguin, Swim With Dolphins at Seaworld

ABC News (QUEENSLAND, Australia) -- The weekend may have been hazy for two Brits and an Aussie, but the trio woke up to a displaced penguin, a bad hangover and serious legal troubles.

The three drunk friends allegedly made a Queensland, Australia SeaWorld their personal playground, swimming with the dolphins, capturing their adventure on cell phone video and bragging about their exploits on Facebook.

On the way out, the trio decided to take a souvenir from their night at the water park. They scooped up a 7-year-old penguin named Dirk, who had never spent a night outside of captivity, officials for the water park said.

After waking up with a penguin guest, police said one of the men panicked and let Dirk go in a waterway known to have sharks. Witnesses who found Dirk said something chased him out of the water. On land, the frightened penguin was chased by a dog before witnesses came to his rescue.

“He was extremely disheveled, he was quite exhausted last night after we did catch him but … he’s settled down well,” Trevor Long, Sea World’s director of marine sciences, told reporters.

As for the three mates, ages 18, 20 and 21 who broke into the water park?

The men have a court date next month where they’ll have to answer to charges of trespassing, theft and unlawfully keeping a protected animal.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

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