CBP Seizes $310,000 for Failure to Declare Currency

While most of our currency seizure clients are have their money taken from customs at an airport, we ocasionally represent people who have had their money seized at a border crossing, such as the Ambassador Bridge or the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel. In this story from CBP, Customs seized over $300,000 from a middle aged Mexican couple who were returning to Mexico. In the vehicle, inside a microwave, they found the stash. This is a class case of bulk cash smuggling, and is no doubt the reason for the seizure. The story does not specifically mention if they were arrested or charged with a crime, but the government has 5 years to do so.

Discovered packages hidden in a microwave oven in the vehicle that contained $309,220 in unreported currency.
CBP officers conducted an intensive secondary examination of the vehicle and discovered packages hidden in a microwave oven in the vehicle that contained $309,220 in unreported currency.

The interception occurred on Sunday, Sept. 27 while CBP officers and Border Patrol agents conducting outbound (southbound) inspections at the Lincoln-Juarez Bridge referred a 2013 Chevy Aveo driven by a 42-year-old male Mexican citizen with a 51-year-old female Mexican citizen passenger for a secondary inspection. CBP officers conducted an intensive secondary examination of the vehicle and discovered packages hidden in a microwave oven in the vehicle that contained $309,220 in unreported currency.

CBP officers seized the currency and the Chevy Aveo. CBP officers turned over the driver and passenger to Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) special agents for further investigation.

Individuals are permitted to carry any amount of currency or monetary instruments into or out of the U.S., however, if the quantity is more than $10,000, they will need to report it to CBP. “Money” means monetary instruments and includes U.S. or foreign coins currently in circulation, currency, travelers’ checks in any form, money orders, and negotiable instruments or investment securities in bearer form. Failure to declare may result in seizure of the currency and/or arrest.

If you have had currency seized from Customs do not try to respond yourself but hire our firm, because we know what we are doing and have successfully handled many cases like yours. If you have questions, please give us a call at (734) 855-4999. We are able to assist with cash seized by customs around the country, including Chicago, Atlanta, New York, Los Angeles, Orlando and many other places, and not just locally in Detroit. Please read these other articles:

  1. Seizure of currency and monetary instruments by U.S. Customs
  2. Seizure for bulk cash smuggling into or out of the U.S.
  3. Structuring currency imports and exports
  4. Is it $10,000 per person?  Under what circumstances is filing a report with Customs for transporting more than $10,000 required?
  5. Criminal & civil penalties for failing to report monetary instrument transportation
  6. Is only cash currency subject to seizure by Customs?
  7. Responding to a Customs currency seizure
  8. How do I get my seized money back?
  9. Getting money seized by U.S. Customs back while staying overseas
  10. How long does it take Customs to decide a petition for a currency/monetary instrument seizure?
  11. Statute of Limitations for Currency Reporting Violations
  12. Filing a Petition for Seized Currency (with Sample and Tips) with CBP
  13. Don’t Talk About Your Customs Currency Seizure Case