Items left behind after take-offs and landings at John F. Kennedy Airport are now up for auction, and NBC 4 New York had an exclusive look at some of what's available. Marc Santia reports. (Published Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2012)
Items left behind after take-offs and landings at John F. Kennedy Airport are now up for auction, and NBC 4 New York had an exclusive look at some of what's available.
The items are currently being stored in warehouses around the tri-state, and the facility near the airport seems more like a room full of forgotten treasures than a storage room.
Inside are boxes and crates full of souvenirs from around the world, unclaimed by their owners.
"They're abandoned. The importer for whatever reason chose not to claim them," said Deputy Chief Almeida, who works with the Customs and Border Protection agency.
All of the items have sat unclaimed for at least 6 months and have thoroughly inspected by CBP after arriving in New York from countries across the globe.
Almeida stressed none of this merchandise has ever been seized by officers or held as evidence -- it was simply never picked up.
The list of what's up for auction is long, and includes guitars, clothing, jewelry, some paper mâché geckos and even a bizarre Iguana belt.
"You never know what you're gonna find when you come to these places here. It's like pot luck most of the time," said Eddie Topak, who, along with other treasure hunters, got to work at the public preview just hours before the official auction.
While this is just a hobby for Topak, he knows one man's trash is another man's treasure and the auction is a chance to cash in.
"Instead of playing on Wall Street, you play in a warehouse," he said with a smile.
The auction will be held Thursday from 8 a.m to 1 p.m at a facility in New Jersey. You can find out more information on the auction here
Published at 5:06 PM EST on Oct 3, 2012