BROWNSVILLE, TEXAS—U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers conducting outbound enforcement operations at the Brownsville Port of Entry seized $81,864 in bulk U.S. currency.
“Vigilance in our outbound enforcement inspections is critical to our efforts of keeping undeclared currency from being exported without meeting proper reporting requirements. I commend our CBP officers for an outstanding seizure and arrest in this alleged bulk currency smuggling case,” said Michael Freeman, CBP Port Director, Brownsville.
On December 7, 2013, CBP officers working outbound enforcement operations at the Brownsville and Matamoros International Bridge came in contact with a 2002 Chrysler Town & Country as it attempted to exit the United States and enter Mexico. The female driver, a 42 year-old United States citizen from Brownsville, Texas was referred to secondary for further inspection. In secondary, a search of the Chrysler resulted in the discovery of three packages of bulk U.S. currency hidden within the vehicle.
CBP officers seized the currency; the driver has been transferred into the custody of U.S. 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.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.