Man’s Money Seized by Customs Trying to Smuggle Out of U.S.

According to a recent news release, Customs intercepted an alleged outbound currency smuggling attempt in Arizona:

A local man was arrested yesterday for attempting to smuggle $50,000 in unreported U.S. currency into Mexico through the Port of Nogales.

Customs and Border Protection officers and Border Patrol agents conducting outbound inspections at the Dennis DeConcini Port referred Rene Becerra-Portillo Jr., 22, of Rio Rico, Ariz., for further questioning. During the subsequent search of the man who was wearing a uniform from a local fast food restaurant and carrying a bag and drink, $50,000 of unreported currency was found inside the bag. The cash was processed for seizure. Becerra was referred to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations.

The seized money was in a fast food bag, and he was wearing a uniform for a fast food joint. The variety of different means smugglers use always impresses me.

If you have money seized and receive a notice of seizure, do not decide how to respond to a CAFRA Notice without first consulting an attorney. Any mistake or error in judgment you make can cost you dearly. The Petition process is a legal process. The petition itself is and should always be a legal document, no different than in any other legal proceeding, that contains detailed factual narrative, what led to the seizure, a review of the relevant law, regulations and Custom’s own guidelines concerning the criteria for remission. When the facts allow for it, our Petition will always include a strong argument for return of the money in full, or even when there is a valid basis for the currency seizure, a strong argument for the money to be returned upon payment of a fine in the smallest amount of money possible, rather than forfeiture of all your money.


If you have had currency seized and are contemplating what to do next, please make use of the other information I make available on this website or call my office at (734) 855-4999 or e-mail us through our contact page. We are able to assist with currency seizures around the country, including Chicago, Atlanta, New York, Los Angeles, Orlando and many other places, and not just locally in Detroit.

Read about responding to a customs currency seizure.