Merrily Steffen, the mother, allowed officers to view the pictures on the memory card of a camera she was carrying, according to the affidavit. It contained images of "stacks of $100 bills bound with rubber bands" and "rhinoceros horns being weighed on scales."
Wade Steffen is incarcerated in Texas. Neither his wife nor his mother was arrested.
During their probe, wildlife officials had intercepted at least 18 shipments of rhino horns from the Steffen family and the owner of a Missouri auction house that trades in live and stuffed exotic animals, court records show. The packages were opened, the horns were identified by scientists and the items were repackaged and sent along to Kha's export business or Nguyen's nail shop, then presumably smuggled out of the country, according to law enforcement sources and court records.