US flag Official website of the Department of Homeland Security

Archived Content

In an effort to keep current, the archive contains content from a previous administration or is otherwise outdated.

CBP Seizes Over $39K in Unreported Currency

Release Date: 
June 10, 2015

Officers discover wads of cash in traveler's luggage

HOUSTON -- U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers working at George Bush Intercontinental Airport, June 6, seized over $39,000 after a traveler failed to properly report the money as required by U.S. law.

CBP officers find over $39,000 in unreported money in international traveler's luggage.

CBP officers find over $39,000 in unreported money in international traveler's luggage.

The traveler, a 39-year-old U. S. citizen, arrived from Managua, Nicaragua and was enroute to Los Angeles, California.

While conducting an enforcement operation, CBP Officers encountered the traveler, and asked if he was transporting more than $10,000 in either currency or other monetary instruments.  The traveler reported he was transporting $7,800; however, a search of his luggage discovered U.S. currency tucked in the pockets of three pair of jeans packed in his suitcase. The total amount of currency seized was $ 39,162. 

The currency was seized for failure to properly report currency in an aggregate amount exceeding $10,000.

“International travelers are provided multiple opportunities to truthfully report the amount of currency they are carrying,” said CBP Port Director Charles Perez.  “Those who refuse to comply with the federal reporting requirements face the risk of having that currency seized. 

“There is absolutely no limit to the amount of currency a traveler can bring into or take out of the United State,” Perez added. “The only requirement is to report amounts that reach or exceed $10,000.”

Travelers report currency by completing FinCEN Form 105 and giving it to a CBP officer.  Currency is not limited to U.S. currency, but includes all negotiable monetary instruments such as Traveler’s Checks, money orders and securities.  A complete list of negotiable monetary instruments is available on FinCEN Form 105.

Last fiscal year, CBP seized more than $81, 496,161 in undeclared or illicit currency.

International travelers are encouraged to visit, Know Before You Go, ahead of travel to learn about reporting requirements and how to make proper declarations.

Last modified: 
February 9, 2017