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Cops Find Drug Stash Inside DVD Player During Bronx Raid

Cops'll tear a place up in a drug raid. Ripping up pillows. Busting through walls. Pulling down shelves. Of course, when the place is clean, there'll probably be a lawsuit coming.

But then there are cases like what happened in an apartment on East Clark Place in the Bronx on October 3. Warrant in hand, NYPD officers entered the apartment. Searched every crevice. And found 30 bags of a "white rock-like substance" hidden inside a DVD player, according to a complaint filed Thursday in State Supreme Court.

There was cash in there too.

The other hiding spot was red sneaker lying on the living room floor: officers found 11 rounds of ammo rolling below the tongue, according to an affidavit by officer Julio Negron.

Not all the contraband was that well put-away, though. Negron noted that there were also nine bags of suspected-crack cocaine sitting "on top of a child's chair in the living room," right beside a silver air pistol. There was another air pistol by the couch, and an air rifle underneath the TV stand.

And there was more cash on top of a ping-pong table. In all, police seized $1,169.

Three suspects--Rene Lane, Kelvin Lopez, and Richard Hayes--were at the apartment. Officers arrested them without incident. The money, prosecutors alleged, belonged to Lane, who was charged with drug possession and illegally owning an imitation pistol.

According to court documents, a judge dismissed the case against Lane in August, "on speedy trial grounds."

In Thursday's complaint, however, the Bronx District Attorney's office argued that the confiscated money should remain in government hands as civil forfeiture. "This defendant," the complaint states, "committed these criminal acts, obtained this United States currency, and employed this United States currency as part of an ongoing drug enterprise."

Send story tips to the author, Albert Samaha



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