Burger King Owner Finds $100,000 in Backpack, Calls Police to Return It | NBC Bay Area

Burger King Owner Finds $100,000 in Backpack, Calls Police to Return It

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    Burger King Owner Altaf Chaux said his employee found $100,000 in a backpack left at his Bascom Road store in San Jose on Thanksgiving. He called police immediately to return it to the rightful owner. (Published Friday, Nov. 28, 2014)

    It's not unusual for things to be left behind at Altaf Chaus' Burger King. Customers have forgotten their cell phones and their laptops in the past.

    But on Wednesday, the day before Thanksgiving, someone left behind a nondescript blue backpack, which sat on a table at the Bascom Avenue fast food store in San Jose, California, for hours. Chaus' employee noticed it and notified him about the forgotten bag.

    "Out of curiosity," Chaus opened the bag to look for an ID or a phone number. Inside? Ten stacks of $10,000 bills, totaling $100,000.

    "I was shocked," he said. "There was a stack of hundred dollar bills wrapped in rubber bands. I called police."

    Burger King owner Altaf Chaus shows the $100,000 found in a backpack on Nov. 26, 2014 in his San Jose restaurant.
    Photo credit: Courtesy of Altaf Chaus

    Officer came by his restaurant that evening to retrieve it, and told him that if it wasn't returned in six months, that he'd be eligible to get the cash. The bag also had an ATM card, some phone numbers, a bag of marijuana and a "white rock" in it, that possibly could have been drugs, Chaus said. San Jose Police Sgt. Heather Randol confirmed the account on Friday adding that police don't have very many leads on who it belongs to.

    Whether it's drug money or cash that was earned legitimately, Chaus said he won't keep the money if it ever comes back to him.

    As a Muslim, he said, he lives by the expression that "if you don't sweat, it's not yours."

    He said that he's worked two jobs since moving the United States and believes in the value of hard work.

    "God has given me a good life, and I'm happy with that," he said. "I might donate the money to needy people...I think you should do the right thing."