Mexican National Smuggling $1.6 Million Over the Border Discovers Dogs Can Smell Cash
Cosme Barcelo-Quijada, a 56-year-old with permanent resident status who lives in Yuma, broke the record for the most cash seized in an Arizona smuggling attempt, and is now short exactly $1,660,210, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
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According to a federal complaint, Barcelo-Quijada was driving into Mexico through the port in Nogales with the cash concealed in a Toyota Tundra pickup.
The U.S. currency was found in a custom-fabricated compartment on the roof of the truck, as well as in the area between the dashboard and the firewall.
Barcelo-Quijada didn't declare any amount of cash over $10,000 while attempting to cross the border, according to the complaint.
Federal court filings don't indicate where authorities believe the money came from, or was going to, but Barcelo-Quijada faces a federal charge of bulk cash smuggling.
Later on Sunday afternoon, CBP made a less-impressive cash bust, as the agency says 34-year-old Nogales, Sonora, resident Jose Luis Verastica-Muno, who was also headed into Mexico, was found with $14,000 cash in his waistband and dashboard.
Both alleged smugglers' vehicles were seized, in addition to the cash.
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