Douglas, Ariz. -U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers stopped an illegal exportation of currency when CBP officers searched a pickup truck and found that $480,000 of undeclared currency was being concealed in the sidewalls of the pickup bed.
On Dec. 15 at approximately 6:30p.m., CBP officers were screening traffic going into Mexico as part of a southbound operation. The officers selected a 2000 GMC Sonoma for further inspection. The vehicle was being driven by a 20-year-old man identified as a Mexican national and resident of Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico. With the assistance of a CBP K-9 team the CBP officers discovered that the man was attempting to smuggle more than $480,000 of undeclared currency out of the United States by concealing the money in an elaborately made hydraulic compartment constructed in the side wall of the bed of the pickup.
"These kinds of monies are the direct results of illegal activities," said Michael Humphries, area port director for the Douglas and Naco ports of entry "There is no doubt that it would have been used to support and assist those activities that threaten our local and national security. Customs and Border Protection remains firm in its commitment to secure our nation's border."
CBP officers seized the vehicle and the undeclared currency. The man was turned over to the custody of Immigration and Customs Enforcement for further investigation and prosecution.
A criminal complaint is simply the method by which a person is charged with criminal activity and raises no inference of guilt. An individual is presumed innocent until competent evidence is presented to a jury that establishes guilt beyond a reasonable doubt
The Office of Field Operations is responsible for securing our borders at the ports of entry. U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers' primary mission is anti-terrorism; they screen all people, vehicles, and goods entering the United States, while facilitating the flow of legitimate trade and travel into and out of the United States. Their mission also includes carrying out traditional border-related responsibilities, including narcotics interdiction, enforcing immigration law, protecting the nation's food supply and agriculture industry from pests and diseases, and enforcing trade laws.
While anti-terrorism is the primary mission of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the inspection process at the ports of entry associated with this mission results in impressive numbers of enforcement actions in all categories.
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.