A British holidaymaker who lost his dentures on a night out in Benidorm in 2011 has been reunited with them thanks to DNA matching.
Paul Bishop, 63, from the Manchester area was shocked to get a package from Spain on Wednesday with the missing top set of false teeth inside it, wrapped in a plastic bag.
Speaking to the Manchester Evening News, Paul said: “ I couldn’t believe it. I was stunned. I’ve moved address. Someone has gone out of their way to trace me.”
The last time he saw the dentures was late during an all-day Benidorm drinking session 11 years ago.
He was sick in an outdoor bin and only realised at the next bar that he didn’t have them any more.
The teeth ended up at a landfill site in Alicante Province and were located by a scanner.
The law states that dentures are classified as a body part and have to be returned, if possible, to their rightful owner.
They were taken from the site and stored for years until a junior technician studying DNA at the National Centre of Biotechnology(CNB) decided to do an exercise on some items.
Much to the technician’s surprise, the test on the teeth produced a match on a European DNA database.
Paul had given a voluntary swab sample in 2007 as part of a police probe with the details retained, even though he was not guilty of any crime.
The technician continued the tracking work by getting Paul’s address via the British Consulate.
The dentures and a covering letter were then sent to his Stalybridge home in Greater Manchester.
The letter advised him to ‘be more careful’.
Unfortunately the set, which had been completely cleaned, no longer fits but they may go on display at a club that Paul manages.