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Charles Preston, a resident of San Jose, found a lot of... Charles Preston, a resident of San Jose, found a lot of cocaine in his used vehicle (Courtesy of the Mercury News)
Every car owner aspires to own the top-of-the-line model, one that comes with options the neighbors don't have.

But few wish for the extras a California man found in his used minivan. San Jose, Calif., psychologist Charles Preston found $500,000 worth of cocaine hidden in the door panels of his used Chrysler Town & Country 15 months after he bought the car, when his car was in the shop having its brakes examined, the Mercury News reported.

The vehicle, which Preston purchased for $14,000 from Thrifty Car Sales in Santa Clara, Calif., had defective windows. That's because the cocaine was in the way, according to the Mercury News.

During the car's time in the shop, a manager at San Jose's DHT Collision & Service Center noticed something was wrong with the insulation in the window panel. It turned out to be the drugs wrapped in cellophane.

The cops confiscated the drugs hidden in the window panels, the paper said, along with the packages found in the wheel wells. Police told him to get rid of the car, fast, in case the drug runners were still looking for it, the paper said.

There are no suspects yet, and tracking them down may take some time since the minivan previously belonged to a rental car agency.

Sgt. Jason Dwyer, a San Jose police spokesman, told the Mercury News that based on the packaging, he suspected the cocaine had been a long haul, maybe from another state or from across the Mexican border.

Preston told the the Mercury News that he used the van to transport food he buys for the needy in his area, but feared he might be tracked by a drug cartel.

But he's not driving it anymore. The owner of Thrifty Car Sales originally agreed to buy back the van for $4,000 less than Preston already paid, but ultimately decided to replace Preston's vehicle with a drug-free ride.



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  • 345 Comments
      • 3 Years Ago
      I kinda have an idea whoever lost a half mill in coke is not still looking for it.........my bet he couldnt look for it if he wanted to!! His employer has seen to that already.
      houseiowapark
      • 3 Years Ago
      The cartel knows where to find him now. Thanks AOL, amongst others.
        croshatch
        • 3 Years Ago
        @houseiowapark
        And they also know he doesn't have the cocaine anymore. Why would they go after him?
      jocar9416
      • 3 Years Ago
      Hey smclaug, whats apocriphy????
        scromolie
        • 3 Years Ago
        @jocar9416
        they meant apocryphal. it means of questionable authenticity
      • 3 Years Ago
      Ya right, He just caught with his own dope and blamed it on the cartel. He delivers something to the needy alright.
      fsffbf
      • 3 Years Ago
      Wow, My best fríènd ,she just has annóuncéd hér wēddīng wīth a rich mān who is a cèlèbrìty !They mèt via~~~~ágéléSSDátê.Сσм ~~~~ ..it is the lārgēst and bēst clúb for rich man with yung and beautiful woman and theìr àdmirèrs to chát ōnlìnè. …You do nǒt hávè to bê rīch ór fāmóùs. ,bùt yōu cān meēt yóùr trùē lòvê , It’s wòrthy ǎ try!ewtewr13
      Andrew
      • 3 Years Ago
      Really? Get rid of it as fast as you can so the bad guys don't come looking for it yet you splashed the vehicle, its contents, its owner and previous owner all over the national media. Really? Sometimes, check that, most of the time the media is counter-productive. As for the drugs, shop guy and owner could've been rich - no guts no glory.
      Buddy Maxwell
      • 3 Years Ago
      This is a lot better than what I found in the window section of the first car I ever had as a young man. It was a 1941 Nash Convertible that I purchased used in 1948. The driver's side window never did work right and when I took it to a mechanic to remove the panel, hundreds upon hundreds of used condoms fell out. The guy that had the car before me must have been a real party thrower! LOL (This is actually a true story!) (People can be really wierd!)
        fritobandav
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Buddy Maxwell
        well what ya compainin bout at least ya had protection,,,,,,unless ya used da back seat
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Buddy Maxwell
        Did they even have condoms back then????
      cgenie1
      • 3 Years Ago
      Come on people, really? If this fellow had known that there were drugs in his car do you honestly think he would have let it sit for that many months if he were dealing? Plus, would he have been stupid enough to take it to someone to have it worked on knowing the drugs were there? I think he would have been smart enough to take the drugs out before taking the car to get worked on...lol I am curious to know if he had ever loaned this vehicle out to anyone. He said the vehicle was used to transport food. I don't blame the fellow for kind of freaking out and wanting to be rid of the car, he could have been killed had the dealers caught up with him, even if he bought the car without knowing, dealers don't really care, all they would have been interested in was getting their drugs...kind of scary if you ask me! Good idea for the car dealership to give him another vehicle to replace it. That car should be impounded and crushed to stop it from being sold to another unsuspecting person. Even though the drugs are gone, if the dealers ever found the car they would suspect its new owner of stealing their drugs. Better safe than sorry!
        rocker
        • 3 Years Ago
        @cgenie1
        EVER MET A SMART CRIMINAL ???THE PRISONS ARE FULL OF SMART CRIMINALS THE SMART ONES YOU DONT HEAR ABOUT
      olznut
      • 3 Years Ago
      How about this to add to the mystery. Since it was Thrifty that sold them the van, Thrifty rents out Chrysler products and I'll bet that it was a previous rental from that agency.
      patriotisland
      • 3 Years Ago
      Used car scam..sell car with hidden drugs...then but it back for $4,000.00 less. That van has been sold 18 times and has created quite a bit of cash flow.
        • 3 Years Ago
        @patriotisland
        LOL I agree with tmorrison1225 and mct08cm. $500K seems like a lot to lose in my book.
        • 3 Years Ago
        @patriotisland
        LOL....I love your economics!! Put $500,000 of drugs in a car for the cops to confiscate so that you can sell a van for $14,000 and buy it back for $4,000 less? Did you read the whole story?
        • 3 Years Ago
        @patriotisland
        There would be a significant loss in this scheme... giving up $500,000 worth of cocaine every time?!
      fritobandav
      • 3 Years Ago
      did the car used to belong to john delorean or maybe pablo escobar
      • 3 Years Ago
      why didnt the cops think the cocaine belonged to the car owner?
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