STERLING, Va. – U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers seized nearly $66,000 from two travelers at Washington Dulles International Airport this weekend for violating federal currency reporting laws.
CBP is not releasing either traveler’s name because they were not criminally charged.
On Friday, CBP officers inspected a U.S. citizen female traveler after she arrived on a flight from Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The woman told CBP officers that she possessed $10,070 and completed a Treasury FINCEN-105 form for that amount. CBP officers then discovered a combined $39,536 in the woman’s carry-on bag and purse. CBP officers seized the currency and released the woman.
On Sunday, CBP officers inspected a U.S. lawful permanent resident male at the departure gate for a flight destined to Casablanca, Morocco. The man reported that he possessed $10,000. Officers assisted the man in completing a FINCEN-105 form to report his $10,000. During a subsequent examination of the man’s carryon bag and jacket, officers discovered a total of $26,000. Officers provided the man $1,300 for humanitarian relief and released him.
“Grossly under-reporting on both the Treasury currency reporting form and verbally to a Customs and Border Protection officer during an inspection is a clear violation of our nation’s currency reporting laws,” said Keith Fleming, Acting Director of Field Operations for CBP’s Baltimore Field Office. “CBP encourages travelers to truthfully report all currency and monetary instruments that they possess to a CBP officer.”
Although there is no limit to the amount of money that travelers may carry when crossing U.S. borders, federal law [31 U.S.C. 5316] requires that travelers report currency or monetary instruments in excess of $10,000 to a CBP officer at the airport, seaport, or land border crossing when entering or leaving the United States. Read more about currency reporting requirements.
During inspections, CBP officers ensure that travelers fully understand federal currency reporting requirements and offer travelers multiple opportunities to accurately report all currency and monetary instruments they possess before examining a traveler’s carryon or checked baggage.
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. On average, CBP seized about $207,000 every day in unreported or illicit currency along our nation’s borders. Learn more about what CBP accomplished during "A Typical Day" in 2019.
An individual may petition for the return of seized currency, but the petitioner must prove that the source and intended use of the currency was legitimate.
CBP officers from the Office of Field Operations conducts the agency’s border security mission at our nation’s ports of entry. CBP officers screen international travelers and cargo and search for dangerous drugs, unreported currency, weapons, counterfeit consumer goods, prohibited agriculture, and other illicit products that could potentially harm the American public, U.S. businesses, and our nation’s safety and economic vitality.