Tag: CMIR

$100 bills laid out on table seized by Customs

CBP Seizes $879K Smuggled by Plane

Customs officers in San Antonio, Texas, seized a very significant amount of cash – $879,000. Typically, we only read about such large amounts of cash being seized by CBP from vehicles, as one can easily imagine is part of the illegal drug trade.

But this time, the money was leaving the country on a private plan. The individuals involved were arrested for bulk cash smuggling. Here’s the story:

U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers working at the San Antonio International Airport intercepted a pair of travelers allegedly smuggling currency out of the U.S. July 15.

The travelers were carrying $879,695 packed in boxes and duct taped closed and were en route to Mexico via private aircraft when they were apprehended.

Two CBP officers arrived to San Antonio’s Fixed Base Operation to conduct an outbound inspection on a private aircraft when they noticed the aircraft was on the runway preparing for departure.  The officers informed the Federal Aviation Administration tower that the aircraft had not been cleared for departure and to direct the plane to the CBP General Aviation Facility.

When the aircraft arrived, the officers began their inspection, which included asking the passengers for an oral declaration of any currency or monetary instruments they were carrying.  Each passenger provided a negative oral declaration followed by a negative written declaration on CBP Form 6051B.

An inspection of the aircraft revealed taped boxes with stacks of currency concealed inside.  CBP officers arrested two Mexican nationals for allegedly intending to evade the currency reporting requirements by knowingly concealing more than $10,000 in currency or other monetary instruments and attempting to transport the currency from within the U.S. to a place outside of the U.S.

[. . . ]

“One of the reasons CBP performs outbound inspections is to protect against unreported exportations of bulk U.S. currency, which often can be proceeds from alleged illicit activity, or currency that funds transnational criminal organizations,” said Houston’s CBP Acting Director of Field Operations Beverly Good. “This significant currency seizure is a direct reflection of our continuing commitment to enforcing all U.S. laws, including federal currency reporting requirements.”

This is among the largest single seizure of unreported currency in the Houston Field Office region which includes San Antonio, Dallas, Austin and Houston.  The two men were arrested and turned over to Homeland Security Investigations.

On a typical day in 2017, CBP officers around the country seized $265,205 in undeclared or illicit currency.

Has CBP San Antonio Seized Your Cash?

If CBP seized your cash at San Antonio International Airport, you should give us a call for a free currency seizure consultation and make use of our free customs cash seizure legal guide.

Tuition Money Seized by Customs

Customs seizure of tuition money is a common occurrence in the weeks prior to the start of either semester of the school year. Like all customs currency seizures, the seizure typically happens because of a failure to file a currency report by people transporting money into the United States of amounts over $10,000.

Lots of foreign students come to the United States and pay their tuition in cash as most colleges won’t accept tuition payments by credit card. Likewise, many foreign exchange students and children of immigrants get a lot of cash assistance from family overseas who understand their duty to pay for their children’s education; it may be a lump $15,000 sum from a parent or grandparent, or a few hundred or thousand dollars from several different relatives or benefactors.

Customs can easily identify someone on student visa, who is relatively young, and is arriving from China, India or Korea; we previously wrote about how customs can “target” currency reporting enforcement based on just these types of criteria. This makes it very easy for them to target students who will then be required to give an accurate report of currency down to the dollar, and if they don’t to seize their cash. The only thing higher than the cost of education is the cost of not accurately reporting money over $10,000 to customs.

What to do when Customs seizes your tuition money?

Traveling with cash? Claim monetary instruments exceeding $10,000 USD!
Don’t let customs seize cash. Traveling with cash? Claim monetary instruments exceeding $10,000 USD!

Take the advice we have already given for responding to a customs money seizure by reading our popular article on the topic: Responding to a Customs Currency Seizure. Currency seizure cases are handled the same whether the money that was seized by customs was intended to be used to pay for college tuition or, for example, for travel expenses. As long as the use of the money is legitimate (and tuition is a legitimate use) and the source of the money is legitimate, with the right legal help you have a good chance of getting your seized tuition money back. If you want to know what a petition to get seized money back from customs looks like, read our article here.

Will I get the money in time to pay my tuition?

It really depends on a variety of circumstances, as we talked about in our popular article on the topic: How long does it take Customs to decide a petition for a currency/monetary instrument seizure? In every case, hiring the right attorney to handle your case can speed up the process, from getting the notice of seizure issued, to gathering evidence (obtaining supporting documents, preparing affidavits and giving customs everything they need without waiting for them to request additional documents), researching and drafting the legal basis for the obtaining a return of the seized currency in the petition, and ultimately, if successful, getting the money returned without delay, often by direct deposit. We work hard at Great Lakes Customs Law to get your seized currency returned back to you in a timely manner by doing the job right the first time.

How can I find out more or hire a law firm to help with my customs currency seizure?

If you have had cash seized by customs and are contemplating what to do next, please make use of the other information available on this website or call our office at (734) 855-4999 to speak to a customs lawyer, or e-mail us through our contact page. We are able to assist with cash seized by customs around the country, including Detroit, Chicago, Atlanta, New York, Los Angeles, Orlando and many other places. 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?

Philly CBP Seizes $50K from Traveler Arriving from Germany

U.S. Customs and Border Protection seized $50,000 cash at a Philadelphia airport from a traveler arriving from Frankfurt, Germany. No criminal charges have been filed yet. The guy, when asked how much he was travelling with, told CBP a couple hundred bucks. Turns out he had about $50,000 more tucked away in a toiletry bag.

This is actually a pretty common occurrence. Why don’t people tell the truth? Well, panic can cause people to act irrationally. Uniformed law enforcement officers asking terse questions can throw anyone off guard, especially the unsuspecting traveler who was just trying to sleep upright on a 9 hour flight with screaming children two rows back. And oftentimes people don’t know the law, and Customs will usually not explain it to you, if at all, as they should.

Let’s have a look at the story…

CBP officers referred the man and his baggage, several shopping bags and a carry-on bag for a comprehensive secondary examination. He declared, on his Customs Declaration Form rp_Keep-Calm-Petition-Meme-211x300.pngand verbally, that he possessed no currency. As CBP officers started inspecting his baggage, the man declared to possessing a “couple hundred dollars.” A CBP officer then discovered a stack of currency concealed inside a toiletry bag, which prompted the man to declare $50,000. The inspection revealed a total of $50,303.

There is no limit to how much currency travelers may bring to, or take from the U.S. However, federal law requires travelers to complete financial reporting forms for any amount that exceeds $10,000 in U.S. dollars or equivalent foreign currency. Travelers who refuse to comply with federal currency reporting requirements risk having their currency seized, and may potentially face criminal charges.

CBP officers provide travelers with multiple opportunities to report truthfully all of their currency.

“We hope that this seizure is a lesson for all travelers that the easiest way to hold on to their currency is to truthfully report it to a CBP officer,” said Susan Stranieri, CBP Port Director for the Area Port of Philadelphia.

If you have had cash seized by customs and are contemplating what to do next, please make use of the other information available on this website or call our office at (734) 855-4999 to speak to a customs lawyer, or e-mail us through our contact page. 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

Cross Border Customs Cash Seizure Nets $39k

U.S. Customs and Border Protection released some news about recent enforcement actions, including a seizure of about 39,000 from a Mexican man entering the United States. No mention if the person involved was arrested. Have you had cash seized by Customs? You can read our popular page on Responding to a Customs Money Seizure HERE. In short, the man can get some of his seized money back from Customs if he can prove the money came from a legitimate source and had a legitimate intended use.

TUCSON, Ariz. – U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers assigned to the Port of Douglas arrested two women – one from Douglas and one from Glendale, Arizona – as well as a cbp cash seizureMexican national man, during separate weekend smuggling attempts involving more than 300 pounds of marijuana and nearly $39,000 in unreported currency. [ . . . ]

[On] Jan. 25, officers conducting outbound inspections referred a 34-year-old man from Mexico for further inspection of his Nissan truck. When officers searched the man and his vehicle, they seized nearly $39,000 in unreported currency.

Officers seized the vehicles [and] currency, and referred all … suspects to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations.

Of course, even if not arrested that day the government has 5 years to criminally charge them. Our customs law firm handles currency/money seizures made by customs in Detroit and around the country. If you have had money seized by Detroit CBP/customs call our office at (734) 855-4999 to speak to a lawyer, or e-mail us through our contact page (see our case results here). We are able to assist with cash seized by customs nationwide, including Detroit, Chicago, Atlanta, New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Orlando.

Please read these other articles about money seizures by customs:

  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. How do I get my seized money back from customs?
  8. Getting money seized by U.S. Customs back while staying overseas
  9. How long does it take Customs to decide a petition for a currency/monetary instrument seizure?
  10. Targeted Enforcement for Customs Money Seizures
  11. Statute of Limitations for Currency Reporting Violations

Cash Seized by U.S. Customs and Arrest for Bulk Cash Smuggling

U.S. Customs reports on a recent customs bulk cash smuggling seizure from a Mexican national attempting to leave the United States. The money was seized and he is being criminally charged. The total amount seized from this individual was $37,181. In order to prevail on criminal bulk cash smuggling charges government must prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, the cash seized by customs was concealed in the vehicle for the purposes of evading the reporting requirement. That’s the essence of the crime of bulk cash smuggling.

Even though the currency was also seized as being involved in a bulk cash smuggling offense, there is a possibility to recover some of the money. To put it somewhat simply, first, he will need to establish that the seized cash came from a legitimate source and had a legitimate intended use. Then, the seized cash can be returned to the extent that seizure is unconstitutional: in other words, that seizure is a violation of the excessive fines clause of the U.S Constitution.

Let’s have a look at the story:

EAGLE PASS, Texas – Federal authorities at the Eagle Pass of Entry arrested a Mexican national Jan. 7, after finding a large amount of undeclared currency in his vehicle as he attempted to leave the country.

“Large amounts of currency may be imported and exported with the proper documentation,” said John Brandt, CBP Port Director, Eagle Pass. “Failure to report international transit of $10,000 or more could mean forfeiture of funds and criminal sanctions.Cash Seizure by Customs

“Seizing undeclared currency at ports of entry serves to deprive criminal organizations of their profits.”

Around 3 p.m. Jan. 7, CBP officers at Eagle Pass International Bridge I, inspected a 2014 Volkswagen GLI as is departed the United States bound for Mexico. During inspection, officers discovered a total of $36,645 in U.S. currency and 7,890 Mexican pesos ($536.37 U.S.) in various locations throughout the vehicle and in the driver’s possession. Officers recovered currency totaling $37,181.

The driver, a 25-year-old Sabinas, Coahuila, Mexico man, was turned over to Homeland Security Investigations for federal prosecution on a charge of 31 U.S. Code § 5332 – bulk cash smuggling into or out of the United States.

The Office of Field Operations is the primary organization within U.S. Customs and Border Protection tasked with an anti-terrorism mission at our nation’s ports. CBP officers screen all people, vehicles and goods entering the United States while facilitating the flow of legitimate trade and travel. Their mission also includes carrying out border-related duties, including narcotics interdiction, enforcing immigration and trade laws, and protecting the nation’s food supply and agriculture industry from pests and diseases.

You can read our popular page on Responding to a Customs Money Seizure HERE. Our customs law firm handles currency/money seizures made by customs in Detroit and around the country; call (734) 855-4999 to consult with a customs lawyer today. If you have had money seized by Detroit CBP/customs call our office at (734) 855-4999 to speak to a lawyer, or e-mail us through our contact page (see our case results here). We are able to assist with cash seized by customs nationwide, including Detroit, Chicago, Atlanta, New York, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and Orlando.

Please read these other articles about money seizures by customs:

  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. How do I get my seized money back from customs?
  8. Getting money seized by U.S. Customs back while staying overseas
  9. How long does it take Customs to decide a petition for a currency/monetary instrument seizure?
  10. Targeted Enforcement for Customs Money Seizures
  11. Statute of Limitations for Currency Reporting Violations

CBP Reminds Public About Currency Reporting Requirement

In the past month we have reported on two violations of the currency reporting requirements that resulted in seizure of money by U.S. Customs & Border Protection at the CBP pre-clearance station in Nassau, Bahamas. Those stories are HERE and HERE. Now we have a “reminder” about the “Currency Reporting Requirement” from that same pre-clearance station, which is excerpted below.

If you have had money seized by customs call our office at  (734) 855-4999 or CONTACT US BY CLICKING HERE to speak to a customs lawyer. We are able to assist with cash seized by customs nationwide, including Detroit, Chicago, Atlanta, New York, Los Angeles, and Philadelphia.cbp money seizure

NASSAU, Bahamas—U.S. Customs and Border Protection reminds travelers of the requirement to report currency amounts of $10,000 or more to CBP when traveling to or from the United States.

Individuals are permitted to carry any amount of currency or monetary instruments into or out of the United States; however, if the quantity is $10,000 or higher, they must formally report the currency to CBP (note: like the money seizure story HERE). If travelers have someone else carry the currency or monetary instrument for them, they must file a currency report for the entire amount with (note: like the structuring story HERE). Failure to report may result in seizure of the currency and/or arrest.

“The easiest way for travelers to hold on to their currency is to truthfully report it all to a CBP officer,” said Robert Allen Smith, area port director for Nassau Preclearance.

There’s a lot of great reasons why you should hire our firm, but one of them is that we know the law: you may not know the law, and oftentimes, as this article shows, customs does not know the law.  Annoyingly, this CBP news release, like many, gets the law wrong. 31 USC 5316(a)(1), the law that gives CBP the authority to seize money and monetary instruments which are not reported, clearly says that a report is required if only if “more than $10,000” is transported, not $10,000 “or more”.

Having an attorney is especially important if more than one person was travelling and the seizure was of cash, there are allegations of smuggling, or structuring, or if you experienced a lengthy dentetion or questioning at the time of seizure. We handle this and many other types of cases, which we publish the results of here.  Read our popular article on responding to a currency seizure by clicking HERE.

Please read these other articles about money seizures by customs:

  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. How do I get my seized money back from customs?
  8. Getting money seized by U.S. Customs back while staying overseas
  9. How long does it take Customs to decide a petition for a currency/monetary instrument seizure?
  10. Targeted Enforcement for Customs Money Seizures

 

U.S. Customs Seizes $69,000 in Cash at Preclearance Station from Traveler

Did you know U.S. Customs & Border Protection has preclearance stations in numerous foreign countries (link)? Did you know that if you fail to report currency at these preclearance stations it will be seized from you just as though you were going through U.S. Customs on U.S. soil? It’s apparently true, and here’s the story of a lady who had almost $70,000 seized for failure to report currency in excess of $10,000 while leaving the Bahamas destined for Fort Meyers, Florida.

NASSAU, Bahamas—U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at the Nassau Preclearance facility discovered $69,739 in undeclared U.S. currency inside a traveler’s carry-on and checked luggage. The Royal Bahamas Police Force took custody of the traveler and the currency.Keep Calm and Declare Monetary Instruments Exceeding $10,000 USD

On Nov. 24, CBP officers encountered a 51-year-old female U.S. citizen traveling to Fort Myers, Florida. The subject was referred for a secondary baggage exam after Nassau Airport Authority Security alerted to a large sum of money inside a piece of checked luggage. During the baggage exam, CBP officers discovered several envelopes addressed to multiple people containing U.S. currency. The subject only reported $900 on her declaration and when questioned reaffirmed to CBP officers that she was traveling with less than $10,000. The traveler failed to formally report the money to CBP resulting in the seizure of the currency.

“This seizure is an excellent example of the cooperative working relationship U.S. Customs and Border Protection has with Nassau Airport Authority Security, who notified CBP of an anomaly in a bag,” said Robert Allen Smith, area port director for Nassau Preclearance. “CBP officers provided the traveler with multiple opportunities to accurately report all currency in her possession; however, she failed to comply with the reporting requirements. The easiest way for travelers to hold on to their currency is to truthfully report it all to a CBP officer.”

Individuals are permitted to carry any amount of currency or monetary instruments into or out of the United States. However, if the quantity is $10,000 or higher, they must formally report the currency to CBP. Failure to report may result in seizure of the currency and/or arrest.

It’s a somewhat intriguing for this customs lawyer, because 31 USC § 5316 requires that a “person . . . shall file a report . . . when the person . . . knowingly transports, is about to transport, or has transported, monetary instruments of more than $10,000 at one time . . . to a place in the United States from or through a place outside the United States”. The implementing regulation, 31 CFR § 1010.306, states that the report shall be filed “at the time of entry into the United States or at the time of departure . . .  from the United States, unless otherwise specified . . . .” At the time the regulation was drafted I don’t think the preclearance stations were contemplated. Thus, there might be a thin argument that there was no failure to report… but this is just me shooting from the hip. I haven’t done any time researching the issue and it should not be relied on anyone as legal advice.

Our customs law firm handles currency/money seizures made by customs in Detroit and around the country; call (734) 855-4999 to consult with a customs lawyer today (you can read our popular page on Responding to a Customs Money Seizure HERE).If you have had money seized by Detroit CBP/customs call our office at (734) 855-4999 to speak to a lawyer, or e-mail us through our contact page (see our case results here). We are able to assist with cash seized by customs nationwide, including Detroit, Chicago, Atlanta, New York, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and Orlando.

Please read these other articles customs currency seizures:

  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. How do I get my seized money back from customs?
  8. Getting money seized by U.S. Customs back while staying overseas
  9. How long does it take Customs to decide a petition for a currency/monetary instrument seizure?
  10. Targeted Enforcement for Customs Money Seizures

U.S. Customs Seizes Bulk Cash from 23 y/o US Citizen

In a currency seizure reported by U.S. Customs, customs seized over $250k 23 year old man headed into Mexico. No mention of an arrest, but just an ongoing investigation. This seizure is probably based on both bulk cash smuggling and failure to report. Both carry criminal consequences. Customs also gets the law wrong, as we explained below, which is a great reason to hire a lawyer for your customs money seizure case. Let’s have a look at the always-interesting-facts in this currency seizure story to see what the person did wrong that caused this encounter to end up as another customs airport money seizure:

U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers conducting outbound enforcement operations at the Brownsville Port of Entry seized $259,750 in bulk U.S. currency. [ . . . ] Stacks of varying denominations totaling $259,750 in cash seized by customsundeclared currency seized by CBP officers and agents recently at Brownsville Port of Entry.

On Nov. 24, CBP officers working outbound enforcement operations at the Gateway International Bridge came in contact with a silver 2007 Volkswagen Jetta as it attempted to exit the United States and enter Mexico. The driver, a 23-year-old United States citizen from Brownsville, Texas was referred to secondary for further inspection. In secondary, a search of the Jetta resulted in the discovery of two packages of bulk U.S. currency hidden within the vehicle. CBP officers seized the currency the vehicle and the case had been referred to Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) special agents for further investigation. [ . . . ]

It is not a crime to carry more than $10,000, but it is a federal offense not to declare currency or monetary instruments totaling $10,000 or more to a CBP officer upon entry or exit from the U.S. or to conceal it with intent to evade reporting requirements. Failure to declare may result in seizure of the currency and/or arrest. An individual may petition for the return of currency seized by CBP officers, but the petitioner must prove that the source and intended use of the currency was legitimate.

If this guy could prove the money came from a legitimate source and had a legitimate intended use, then this customs cash seizure was completely avoidable. Near the bottom of this story customs states that the law requires that a person file a formal report of “$10,000 or higher” into or out of the United States. That is incorrect. The law requires reports of more than $10,000. If even customs doesn’t know the law, you are better of hiring an attorney.

Our customs law firm handles currency/money seizures made by customs in Detroit and around the country; call (734) 855-4999 to consult with a customs lawyer today (you can read our popular page on Responding to a Customs Money Seizure HERE).If you have had money seized by Detroit CBP/customs call our office at (734) 855-4999 to speak to a lawyer, or e-mail us through our contact page (see our case results here). We are able to assist with cash seized by customs nationwide, including Detroit, Chicago, Atlanta, New York, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and Orlando.

Please read these other articles customs currency seizures:

  1. Seizure of currency and monetary instruments by U.S. CustomsKeep Calm and Declare Monetary Instruments Exceeding $10,000 USD
  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. How do I get my seized money back from customs?
  8. Getting money seized by U.S. Customs back while staying overseas
  9. How long does it take Customs to decide a petition for a currency/monetary instrument seizure?
  10. Targeted Enforcement for Customs Money Seizures

“Strapped” for Cash? U.S. Customs Will Seize It!

In a currency seizure reported by U.S. Customs, customs seized $50,000 from a 25 year old man headed into Mexico and arrested him; although not specifically stated in the story, the money was probably arrested for bulk cash smuggling and failure to report, which carries with it criminal consequences. If this guy could prove the money came from a legitimate source and had a legitimate intended use, then this customs cash seizure was completely avoidable. Our customs law firm handles currency/money seizures made by customs in Detroit and around the country; call (734) 855-4999 to consult with a customs lawyer today (you can read our popular page on Responding to a Customs Money Seizure HERE).

 Here are the details from customs:

U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at the San Ysidro port of entry Wednesday discovered $51,300 in unreported U.S. currency concealed underneath the clothing of a man traveling to Mexico on foot.

The incident occurred on November 4, at about 11:20 a.m., when CBP officers were conducting southbound inspections of travelers heading to Mexico through the San Ysidro port of entry. Officers targeted a 25-year-old male Bundled Currency Seized by U.S. CustomsU.S. citizen, and escorted him to a secure area for further examination.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers inspecting travelers walking south into Mexico at the San Ysidro port of entry found these bundles of cash strapped (pictured at right) to a 25-year-old male U.S. citizen.During the inspection, a CBP currency and firearms detector dog alerted to the man, leading officers to the discovery of eleven wrapped bundles of U.S. currency concealed underneath layers of his clothing.

The man, a resident of Hacienda Heights, California, was arrested and turned over to the custody of Homeland Security Investigations agents. He was later transported to the Metropolitan Correctional Center to await criminal arraignment. CBP seized the money.

It is a federal offense not to declare currency or monetary instruments totaling more than $10,000 to a CBP officer upon entry or exit from the U.S. or to conceal it with intent to evade reporting requirements. Failure to declare may result in seizure of the currency and/or arrest.

The fact that he was arrested might (but not necessarily does) indicate that customs believed he was transporting the money for some illegal purpose beyond just the smuggling/failure to report violation itself. Apparently the cash wasn’t wrapped good enough to get past the detetction dog‘s might impressive sense of smell.

If you have had money seized by Detroit CBP/customs call our office at (734) 855-4999 to speak to a lawyer, or e-mail us through our contact page (see our case results here). We are able to assist with cash seized by customs nationwide, including Detroit, Chicago, Atlanta, New York, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and Orlando.

Please read these other articles customs currency seizures:

  1. Seizure of currency and monetary instruments by U.S. CustomsKeep Calm and Declare Monetary Instruments Exceeding $10,000 USD
  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. How do I get my seized money back from customs?
  8. Getting money seized by U.S. Customs back while staying overseas
  9. How long does it take Customs to decide a petition for a currency/monetary instrument seizure?
  10. Targeted Enforcement for Customs Money Seizures

CBP Seized $109K in Unreported Funds

On the tails of our last currency seizure post (herecomes this story about an elderly Yuma, Arizona man concealing a total of nine packages of currency in his windshield cowling in an apparent effort to smuggle it out of the country and into Mexico. Like the last story, this is more about smuggled currency rather than just “unreported funds,” which is a bulk cash smuggling violation. This is a little different than the usual cases we handle, which are seizures of money by customs at the airport (but, you can read our popular page on Responding to a Customs Money Seizure HERE).

On to this story:

Tucson, Ariz. — A 74-year-old Yuma man was arrested Monday for attempting to smuggle nearly $109,000 in unreported U.S. currency into Mexico through the Port of Nogales.

Hidden Cash Seized by Customs

U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers conducting outgoing inspections referred a Ford SUV for further inspection at the Dennis DeConcini crossing and located nine packages of currency hidden within the windshield cowling.

Officers seized the unreported currency and referred the driver to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations.

On Sept. 16, officers at the Mariposa crossing seized more than $189,000 found in the roof of a vehicle attempting to cross into Mexico.

If you have had cash seized by customs and are contemplating what to do next, please make use of the other information available on this website or call our office at (734) 855-4999 to speak to a customs lawyer, or e-mail us through our contact pageWe 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.

Read these other articles about customs money seizures:

  1. Seizure of currency and monetary instruments by U.S. Customs
  2. Customs currency seizure for bulk cash smuggling into or out of the U.S.
  3. Customs currency seizure; 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. Getting money seized by U.S. Customs back while staying overseas
  8. How long does it take Customs to decide a petition for a currency/monetary instrument seizure?
  9. Customs currency seizure; Tuition Money Seized by Customs