Dulles CBP officers seize $32,000 in unreported currency.

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Seized currency from Ghana bound traveler, source: CBP.gov

According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP)  media release, CBP officers at Washington Dulles International Airport seized $32,000 from a traveler headed to Ghana for violating currency reporting requirements.

While stopped by CBP, the US citizen and resident of Liberia made verbal representations he was in possession of $15,000. Additionally, the media release claims the traveler also declared in writing that he was only carrying $15,000. Not mentioned in the media release – but Customs will ask you to sign the Fincen form. If you are asked to sign this form, be sure to report ALL the currency you are carrying and include all the travelers in your group.

It is important to write the actual amount you have and anyone you are traveling with. Our clients have had their money seized for under reporting by just $8 dollars (yes, not a typo – eight dollars).

After the verbal and written declaration, CBP officers did a baggage examination and found a total of $33,040.

What’s not written in the article is the incredibly invasive nature of the baggage examination – CBP will take you and your luggage to a room and go through everything: unzip everything, check every pocket, check every sock, check every single item of clothing and open anything that can be opened. This will take a long time and you will miss your flight.

In the instant seizure, CBP returned $750 as a “humanitarian release” and allowed the traveler to continue on his way. The humanitarian release is a discretionary amount that does not have to be provided to the traveler and the amount returned can be nothing to several hundred. This humanitarian release of $750 is fairly generous for a single traveler –

If you have had your hard earned cash and currency seized by Customs, contact experienced seizure attorney David Hsu by phone/text for immediate assistance – my number is 832-896-6288 or you can email me at my catch-all email: attorney.dave@yahoo.com or official work address: dh@gjatradelaw.com.

If you have received a seizure notice, don’t delay, time is running from the date of the letter and you must take action.

15,000 invasive mitten crabs seized since September 2019.

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Image of seized mitten crabs, source: CBP.gov

According to a US Customs and Border Protection media release, Customs agents in Cincinnati have seized 3,700 mitten crabs from China and Hong Kong in the past 4 months.

Over the past 4 months, 3,700 mitten crabs have been found in 51 shipments and were set to be delivered to New York. The shipments were labeled as “tools and various clothing articles”. Nationwide, Customs has seized over 15,000 mitten crabs since September 2019. The mitten crabs are considered a delicacy in Asia.

Here in the US, mitten crabs are an invasive species because they are omnivores and eat anything, impacting the food supply to aquatic plants, fish, algae, other crabs and all living organisms in the water. Mitten crabs are also especially invasive as they are found in fresh water when young and salty water in adult life. Mitten crabs also tend to burrow furthering land erosion and weakening levees and flood control measures.

If you have received a letter from Customs regarding the wrongful importation of invasive species or if you have questions about the exportation of foods that may be subject to Fish and Wildlife regulations, contact experienced Customs and seizure attorney David Hsu by phone/text at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com, dh@gjatradelaw.com.

CBP Seizes $253k in Counterfeit Edison speakers from China.

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Image of seized speakers, source: CBP.gov

According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) media release, officers seized 1,626 counterfeit Edison Professional speakers in Philadelphia earlier this week. If the Edison speakers were authentic, the manufacturer’s suggested retail price would have been approximately $253,572.

The speakers arrived in two shipments from China destined for an address in Los Angeles. CBP suspected the speakers were counterfeit because of poor packaging and markings. CBP’s Electronics Centers for Excellence and Expertise, confirmed the Bluetooth markings on the speakers were counterfeit.

My guess is these speakers were to be sold through the “white van” scams where people sell supposedly high end speakers or counterfeit speakers from a van. The pitch is that the speakers are “leftovers” from an installation and the installers were told to get rid of them.

CBP claims counterfeit goods cause revenue loss, damage the US economy and threaten the health and safety of Americans. CBP claims in 2018 over $3.7 million worth of good were seized daily for intellectual property rights (IPR) violations.

In our practice, most of the IPR are for fake markings such as the “UL” or “Bluetooth” or “USB” logos in addition to our frequent seizures of Apple and Samsung phones. Protip – if you import legos, that’s fine, but do not include the minifigure head – it will be seized.

If you have had a Customs seizure for IPR violations, contact experienced seizure attorney David Hsu at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com, dh@gjatradelaw.com.