Russian police in unexpected encounter with crocodile

Crocodiles climb a mud bank toward workers, at a farm owned by the Rosenthal family in San Manuel Cortes, northern Honduras, Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2015. Thousands of crocodiles on the private farm have been poorly fed because of a lack of resources, according to authorities and employees at the property, after the bank accounts of the Rosenthal family were seized during a probe into accusations they were operating a money laundering network linked to drug trafficking. Farm employees said the animals went without food for more than a month, but were finally fed over the weekend thanks to donations. (AP Photo/Fernando Antonio)

ST. PETERSBURG, Russia (AP) — Russian police had an unexpected encounter while searching a house in St. Petersburg — a crocodile in the basement.

The Fontanka.ru news portal said the incident happened Thursday while detectives were looking for undeclared weapons in the house of a man involved in staging reconstructions of historic military battles with period uniforms and antique weaponry.

When they went down they saw a crocodile resting in a small pool of water dug in concrete basement. The owner of the house explained that he got the crocodile years ago.

City prosecutors said Friday they were checking whether the man was complying with local laws.