Man's New Car Starts Rattling for Very Illegal Reason

A cautionary tale on buying drug-smuggling cars seized by cops
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Dec 18, 2016 1:33 PM CST
Guy's Car Rattle Turns Out to Be $130K in Heroin
Some 19,000 bags of heroin are displayed during a news conference, Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2016, in Hazleton, Pa.   (Ellen F. O'Connell/Hazelton Standard-Speaker via AP)

A northern Kentucky man bothered by a rattle in a car he'd recently bought at an Ohio auto auction has found 2 pounds—or about $130,000—of heroin in a secret compartment inside the vehicle, reports the AP. "We went out to dinner one night and the car started making a strange noise inside the passenger seat," the man, who's asking to remain anonymous, tells WCPO. In fact, he drove the Volkswagen Jetta for several weeks before discovering the heroin beneath the front passenger seat.

Investigators found more than 6.5 pounds of heroin in the car eight months ago after the Ohio State Highway Patrol arrested a former Mexican law enforcement officer who said a drug cartel forced him to drive the drugs across the country. A Highway Patrol spokesman says the car was thoroughly searched before it was released to the auction. Apparently not thoroughly enough—though a Cincinnati DEA official tells WCPO that "it’s actually probably more common that law enforcement does miss cash or drugs in vehicles just based on the way things are hidden," he said. "The only person that may know exactly how to operate the trap or where the trap is is the person who built it." The auction company has agreed to take the car back. (More heroin stories.)

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