It was supposed to be a regular day at the helm of his charter shark boat, but this fisherman made a rather unexpected catch off the coast of Miami.
Quartiano, who had customers on the boat that included students at the University of Miami, spotted the package bobbing in the water about two miles off the coast of the city.
“It is not an everyday occurrence and rare to see cocaine floating in the water,” he told InsideEdition.com
The former Miami-Dade police officer knew right away what the package was after his slew of drug busts during Miami’s cocaine-fueled era of the late 1970s and early 1980s.
Quartiano said he spotted the package first and the students had no idea what it was. He said his customers were shocked and “surprised” because “they have never seen that before, up close and personal.”
After calling the Coast Guard to retrieve the package, he handed the kilo over.
While he doesn’t know what else the package may have contained, he said: “there is a possibility there could be cash in there.”
“Back in the day, that is what they used to do," Quartiano added. "Tie money to a brick of cocaine and drop it in the water.”
During his days as an officer of the law and in his 40-year history as a shark fisherman, Quartiano said “square groupers,” bundles of marijuana floating in Miami waters, has been a common sight.
In the past, "Mark the Shark" has “spotted some suspicious stuff and seen boats with no fishing rods drifting near packages.” In those instances, he keeps on going and stays quiet.
While it remains unknown who the drugs belonged to, Quartiano, who catches about 800 sharks per year, said he isn’t afraid of anyone coming after him.