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Dulles CBP Officers Seize a combined $60,000 in Unreported Currency from Turkey and Ghana Travelers

Release Date: 
December 16, 2019

STERLING, Va. – For the fourth time in two weeks, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers seized unreported currency from travelers at Washington Dulles International Airport.

CBP currency detector dog Cato alerted to a Turkey couple's baggage where officers discovered $20,654 in unreported currency at Washington Dulles International Airport December 12, 2019.
CBP currency detector dog Cato

Thursday night, CBP officers encountered a couple from Turkey who reported that they possessed $5,000. Officers advised the couple of federal reporting requirements and the couple confirmed that they understood and again reported $5,000. CBP currency and firearms detector dog Cato alerted to one of the couple’s bags and officers discovered a total of $20,654. Officers seized $20,000 and returned $654 to the couple for humanitarian relief.

On Saturday, CBP officers inspected a couple bound for Ghana who reported that they possessed $36,000, both verbally and in writing. While examining their baggage, CBP officers discovered a total of $40,781 in their possession. Officers seized $40,000 and returned $781 to the couple for humanitarian relief.

Previously, CBP officers seized $21,000 in unreported currency from a woman bound for Pakistan December 6, and officers seized $25,151 in unreported currency from a couple bound for Ghana November 30.

It is legal to carry large sums of currency into or out of the United States. However, federal law requires that travelers who possess $10,000 or more in currency or other monetary instruments must report it all to a CBP officer at the airport, seaport, or land border crossing when entering or leaving the country. Read more about currency reporting requirements.

Consequences for violating U.S. currency reporting laws are severe; penalties may include seizure of most or all of the traveler’s currency, and potential criminal charges.

“Customs and Border Protection wants travelers to understand and to comply with our nation’s currency reporting requirements, and those who choose not to comply face serious consequences, such as in these seizures,” said Casey Durst, Director of Field Operations for CBP’s Baltimore Field Office. “CBP remains committed to enforcing our nation’s laws, including federal currency reporting laws, at our nation’s international ports of entry.”

 All travelers, both U.S. citizens and foreign visitors, are encouraged to Know Before You Go to help ease their international arrivals inspection, and to visit CBP’s Travel website to learn more about rules governing travel to and from the U.S.

CBP uses a variety of techniques to intercept narcotics, unreported currency, weapons, counterfeit consumer goods, prohibited agriculture, and other illicit products, and to assure that global tourism remains safe and strong. On a typical day, CBP seizes an average of about $290,000 in unreported or illicit currency along our nation’s borders. Learn more about what CBP accomplishes during "A Typical Day."

CBP's border security mission is led at our nation’s Ports of Entry by CBP officers from the Office of Field Operations.  Please visit CBP Ports of Entry to learn more about how CBP’s Office of Field Operations secures our nation’s borders.

Learn more about CBP at CBP.gov.

Last modified: 
December 16, 2019