Here's an idea that's one part skulduggery, one part idiocy and one part '80s road comedy starring Burt Reynolds.
The story: A gang of drug runners needed to move some product from Argentina to Spain without drawing a lot of attention. Now, you could do the traditional under-cover-of-darkness route, or you could hide in plain sight by stashing your drugs in a car that's running in one of the world's most famous races.
(Very important disclaimer: that car above is NOT the one the drug-runners used. That's BMW's Stephane Peterhansel and Jean Paul Cottret of France.)
Here's how it went down. This crew of unconventional drug runners shipped a truck from Bilbao, Spain to Argentina, where they entered it in the world-renowned Dakar Rally in January. The race runs through the hinterlands of Argentina and Chile for two weeks, and is both exhilarating and potentially deadly. During one of the stages of the race, the drug runners stopped at a farm outside Buenos Aires and stashed the contraband in a series of false bottoms and compartments.
How much contraband? This much: 814 kilos of cocaine, 15,000 ecstasy tablets, 4.5 kilos of hashish, two guns and approximately $64,000 in cash.
Thus laden, truck continued to run the race — after all, it was tricked out with all necessary maps and equipment, all the way up to the official uniform. "The vehicle had been totally transformed to adapt it to its supposed participation in the competition as a support truck, with publicity and logos of the event painted on its side," Spanish police said in a statement. (But who was the sponsor? No word from the Spanish police, alas.)
Anyway, the truck finished the race — its finishing position was not disclosed either — and was loaded onto a ship for a return trip to Bilbao. It arrived a few days ago, and Spanish authorities promptly seized it. The police believe that the drugs were destined for the Spanish island of Ibiza, a popular European tourist site. Not on the Spanish police's watch, evildoers!
Look, drugs are bad, and running drugs is never a good idea. On the plus side, I will say this: I've totally got an idea for "Smokey & The Bandit 2012." Hollywood, call me!