Mexican National Smuggling $1.6 Million Over the Border Discovers Dogs Can Smell Cash
Today in Found at the Border: A Mexican national trying to smuggle more than $1.6 million out of the United States discovered that dogs can be trained to sniff out 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.
-Man Busted Smuggling $100,000 Out of U.S. Either Lied or Is Bad at Counting
-Mexican National Tries, and Fails, to Hide 3,000 Pounds of Weed in Cans of Jalapeños
-Agents Find Heroin Stuffed in a Guy's Belly Button
-Bell Peppers Will Not Disguise 2,000 Pounds of Weed
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.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss Phoenix New Times' biggest stories.