STERLING, Va., — U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) seized more than $56,000 in unreported currency from three groups of Ghana- and Turkey-bound travelers at Washington Dulles International Airport this week.
Travelers may carry as much currency as they wish into and out of the United States. None of the currency is taxed. Federal law requires that travelers who possess $10,000 or more in currency or monetary instruments must report it to a CBP officer and complete a U.S. Treasury Department financial form.
Three more travelers failed to truthfully report all their currency to a CBP officers and saw their currency seized.
Consequences for violating U.S. currency laws are severe: from loss of all unreported currency to potential criminal charges, as illustrated by the following three cases:
- CBP officers seized $18,565 from a passenger boarding a flight to Istanbul, Turkey Sunday. Officers discovered the unreported currency in the travelers checked baggage, carry-on bag and cellular phone case.
- CBP officers seized $20,710 from a family boarding a flight to Ankara, Turkey Sunday. Officers discovered the unreported currency in the family’s baggage.
- CBP officers seized $17,210 from a couple boarding a flight to Accra, Ghana Sunday. Officers discovered the unreported currency in four envelopes inside their baggage.
Travelers in all three cases were U.S. citizens. None was arrested.
“Customs and Border Protection urges travelers to be completely honest during CBP inspections, including by truthfully report all of their currency,” said Daniel Mattina, CBP Area Port Director for the Area Port of Washington Dulles. “The best way for travelers to hold onto their currency is to fully comply with our nation’s currency reporting laws.”
In each case, CBP officers afforded the travelers multiple opportunities to truthfully report all currency.
“Customs and Border Protection outbound inspections protect against unreported exportations of bulk U.S. currency, which often can be proceeds from alleged illicit activity, or that fund transnational criminal organizations,” said Casey Owen Durst, Director, CBP’s Field Operations Director in Baltimore. “These significant currency seizures are a direct reflection of CBP’s continuing commitment to enforcing all U.S. laws, including federal currency reporting requirements, at our nation’s international ports of entry.”
Travelers are encouraged to visit CBP’s Travel section to learn more about the CBP admissions process and rules governing travel to and from the U.S.
CBP’s Office of Field Operations
Almost a million times each day, CBP officers welcome international travelers into the U.S. In screening both foreign visitors and returning U.S. citizens, CBP uses a variety of techniques to intercept narcotics, unreported currency, weapons, prohibited agriculture, and other illicit products, and to assure that global tourism remains safe and strong.
On a typical day, CBP seizes $265,205 in undeclared or illicit currency along our nation’s borders. Learn more about what CBP did during "A Typical Day" in 2017.
CBP's border security mission is led at 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.