Amputated leg left inside auctioned meat smoker

A US man who bought a meat smoker at an auction of abandoned items had a nasty surprise when he found a leg inside.

Police in Maiden, North Carolina, said the man opened up the smoker and saw what he thought was a piece of driftwood wrapped in paper.

But when he unwrapped it, he discovered the human leg, cut off a few inches above the knee.

The smoker had been sold at an auction of items left behind at a storage facility, so investigators contacted the mother and son who had rented the space where the smoker was found.

The mother explained her son had his leg amputated after a plane crash and kept the leg following the surgery.

The mother said her son plans to drive to Maiden, about 35 miles (55 kilometres) northwest of Charlotte, to reclaim his amputated leg, police said.

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