The Mongolian government says it's finally getting its missing Tyrannosaurus skull back -- and it appears they've got Nic Cage to thank!
The 65 MILLION year old skull was auctioned off in Manhattan back in 2007 -- after it was smuggled into the U.S. ... and multiple reports say it was ultimately purchased by Cage for $276k.
Multiple law enforcement agencies worked like hell to track down the skull --and say the current owner (most likely Cage) gave it up without a fight.
Cage outbid Leonardo DiCaprio for the skull ... according to multiple reports.
FYI -- Cage is not accused of any wrongdoing ... but officials are clearly gunning for the person they believe smuggled the bones into the U.S. in the first place.
Apparently, there's a HUGE black market for dinosaur bones stolen out of Mongolia ... and officials are still working to track down 3 MORE T-Rex skeletons -- along with the fossils of several other dinos.