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Cops Find Baby Koala in Woman's Backpack

Alfred will now get a proper home
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 7, 2016 6:39 AM CST

(Newser) – A woman was arrested "on outstanding matters" during a traffic stop in Brisbane on Sunday with a rather cute companion. Asked if she had anything to declare, the 50-year-old woman handed officers a canvas backpack, claiming a baby koala was inside, reports the BBC. "Not quite believing their ears, the officers cautiously unzipped the bag and found this gorgeous boy," police say, per the Guardian. The woman told police she had found the joey on a road in a Brisbane suburb on Saturday and was looking after it.

Koalas, however, are protected in Australia and can't be kept as pets; anyone who finds one has 72 hours to give it to the proper officials. The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals has taken custody of the 6-month-old joey, now dubbed Alfred, who "will shortly be going out to a carer," a rep says. The koala, a little over 3 pounds, was slightly dehydrated but is otherwise in good health. "He's been on fluids but is doing well," the rep says. Police are investigating the woman's story and have not yet pressed charges related to the joey. (Read more Australia stories.)

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