A MAN in the United States has found 19 bags of cocaine in a second-hand van he bought for $14,000.
A man has found half a million dollars worth of cocaine hidden in his van 15 months after he bought it.
According to Silicon Valley website, Mercury News, the car's owner, Dr Charles Preston, found the contraband after taking the vehicle to his mechanic. Preston, a psychologist from San Jose, reportedly noticed that the windows of the car did not wind all the way down. The mechanic discovered the cause of the problem: the doors of the van were filled with 14 bags of cocaine. Another five bags were found in the rear panels.
Preston paid $14,000 for the Chrysler Town and Country (Voyager), which at one stage had been a rental vehicle.
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He was using to cart around food to homeless people in his area. He told Mercury News that, even after he turned the drugs into the police, he was scared that the people who planted to cocaine would still try to find it.
"People make jokes: oh, you should have sold it," Preston said. "But honestly, I've never been so scared in my life, even when I was mugged in New York."
San Jose police sergeant Jason Dwyer says Preston has good reason to be concerned.
"It's absolutely dangerous," Dwyer said. "If somebody is motivated to track down that van and doesn't want any witnesses, then some physical harm could come to the owner. That's a lot of dope to be misplaced."
Worried that the vehicle may have been being tracked, Preston attempted to take it back to the dealership - where he was offered about $4000 less than he paid.
The dealer principal has since offered to swap the van for a "drug-free ride".
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