Accused ATM-skimmer swallows USB drive in custody, doctors remove from his gut

Smoking Gun reports that a NYC man accused of participating in an ATM-skimming ring was raided by feds, and in an unusual attempt to destroy evidence, grabbed a flash drive and swallowed it whole while in the custody of Secret Service agents:

kingston.jpg[I]n the view of investigators, [Florin] Necula "grabbed Subject Flash Drive 2, which had been on his person at the time of his arrest, and swallowed," Agent Joseph Borger noted in the below February 25 search warrant affidavit. When Necula was unable to pass the item after about four days, doctors--concerned that the drive was not compatible with the suspect's GI tract--concluded he "would be injured if they allowed the flash drive to remain inside of him," reported Borger. Necula eventually agreed to allow doctors at New York Downtown Hospital to remove the item, according to a source familiar with the incident.

A Kingston executive said it was unclear if stomach acid could damage a flash drive. "As you might imagine, we have no actual experience with someone swallowing a USB," Mike Sager wrote in an e-mail to TSG.

Mr. Necula is currently being held without bail at a jail in Queens, New York. Here are the court documents.