Almost 10 kilograms of highly toxic mercury have been discovered neatly stashed in flasks in a garage in north-east Moscow, Interfax reported.
The owner of the garage told police that the flasks, 16 in total, belonged to a man who had rented the space before dying 8 years ago.
Bound in four packages, the containers were all hermetically sealed, and before carrying them away police concluded that they presented no health or environmental risk.
The World Health Organization lists mercury as one of the top ten chemicals or groups of chemicals of major public health concern. Mercury is corrosive to the skin, and toxic if ingested or inhaled. The element is a particular threat in the early stages of children's development.