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CBP Seizes $86K Concealed in Luggage

Release Date: 
January 4, 2017

Traveler refused to accurately report currency

HOUSTON— U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH) seized over $86,000 from a traveler en route to Peru. 

A Peruvian national, arriving from Japan, was referred to secondary for duty collection on cigarettes.  CBP officers explained the currency reporting requirements and the traveler declared $4,000, Dec. 7.

currency seized in Houston
CBP officers in Houston seized $86,000
after a traveler refused to report it.

“Travelers have no limit to the amount of currency they can bring into or take out of the U.S.; however, they are required by U.S. law to report if they are carrying $10,000 or more,” said Port Director Charles Perez.  “When travelers refuse to comply with federal reporting requirements, they face the risk of having the currency seized and possible civil and or criminal penalties assessed.” 

A baggage exam revealed keys to additional luggage, which the traveler claimed were in Peru.  The luggage was located and inspected, at which time CBP officers discovered $100 bills lined within eight packages of photo paper totaling $80,000. An envelope containing over $2,400 was also discovered.  In total, CBP seized more than $86,000.

Travelers are encouraged to visit the “Travel” or “Know Before You Visit” sections of the CBP website prior to international travel.  

Last modified: 
February 9, 2017