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$10,000 STASH DISCOVERED BY SCOUTS WAS PART OF DRUG DEAL, IDAHO AGENTS SAY

The $10,000 stash uncovered June 1 by a group of Post Falls Explorer Scouts on a litter detail has been seized by state drug agents, who say it was part of a drug deal.

The cash was found about a half mile north of Seltice Way by members of Explorer Post 204 during a countywide cleanup project.The Explorers turned the cash over to the Kootenai County Sheriff's Department, which in turn gave it to Lt. Wayne Longo, regional director of the state Bureau of Narcotics.

Longo said two men who were arrested May 31 in the vicinity tossed the cash out the window of a van while they were being pursued by police.

Arrested were Jose Luis Torres, 27, Yakima, Wash., and Jesus Rodriguez Garcia, 26, Vista, Calif., who each were charged Monday with conspiracy to violate the Controlled Substance Act.

Longo alleges the men had with them in the van $42,500, which they intended to use to purchase hydriodic acid, a chemical used in the manufacture of methamphetamines.

The deal had been arranged two weeks earlier by an undercover agent, who accepted a down payment from Torres and Garcia, Longo said.

Police saw something fly out the passenger window as soon as they activated their emergency lights, Longo said.

Recovered from the van was $23,500. Police later that morning found nine bundles of cash along the roadway.

Police did not see a second bundle fly out the window. But Torres, who was the passenger, told police he tossed out $18,000 or $19,000, Longo said.