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Police find python guarding stash of cocaine

Rare albino snake was kept hungry to intimidate customers

11 August, 18:21
Police find python guarding stash of cocaine

(ANSA) - Rome, August 11 - Police came face to face with a a hissing and famished python coiled around a stash of cocaine when they broke into a Rome flat overnight, and had to calm it down by feeding it a whole chicken.

The rare albino python, which experts identified as the Python Molurus Bivittatus, was "placed in custody" at the Rome zoo after forest guards were called in to capture it.

Police said they had arrested the drug traffickers' leader, an unidentified woman, and 11 men under her command.

The three-metre-long python was usually kept hungry so it would intimidate customers who owed the traffickers money, police said.

It was sitting atop 200 grams of cocaine while the gang was busy preparing doses of cocaine for distribution in another room.

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