Dulles airport is a new hotbed for CBP cash seizures. And based on the volume of stories coming out from CBP about currency seizures they’ve conducted, they love to talk about. In fact, in the last 2 weeks CBP seized money from 5 different groups of people for “intentionally” violating the federal currency reporting regulations.
It’s curious that CBP should state that the law was “intentionally” violated, as intent has nothing to do with whether the law was broken (at least, in CBP’s interpretation of the law). The only thing that is require for a violation of the cash reporting law is a knowing transportation or more than $10,000 into or out of the country, not a knowing violation of the reporting requirement. It is, in the legal world, called a “bright line” rule. In other words, if you leave or enter the country with more than $10,000 and you do not report it, it does not matter why you did not report it, you’ve broken the law by the very transportation of the money itself.
Here is the whole story concerning the 5 recent seizures at Dulles, as told by CBP:
A handful of international travelers learned of the value of truthfully reporting all currency they possessed to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers at Washington Dulles International Airport recently. That value came to about $113,000 in seized currency.
CBP officers seized a total of $112,819 during five seizures over the last 10 days for violating federal currency reporting requirements. These currency seizures included:
- $36,639 from a family departing Washington Dulles for Laos on October 25;
- $14,221 from a woman departing to South Korea on October 24;
- $22,034 from man who arriving from Ghana on October 22;
- $17,946 from a man and woman departing to El Salvador on October 18; and
- $21,979 from a man departing to Belgium.
In each incident, CBP officers allowed the travelers multiple opportunities to be truthful, and to read, understand and acknowledge the currency reporting law before officers inspected the travelers. In each incident, CBP officers found additional currency above what the travelers repeatedly claimed they possessed.
As customs stated, the total of these seizures exceeded the $73,900 that CBP officers seized from Serbian bound man on October 3. What’s up, Dulles CBP? Have your currency seizure reporting priorities just kicked up a few notches?