Officers find $1.6M headed to Mexico

2013-06-11T00:00:00Z 2013-06-11T10:19:04Z Officers find $1.6M headed to MexicoArizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
June 11, 2013 12:00 am  • 

Two Mexican nationals were arrested in separate weekend incidents in connection with attempts to smuggle more than $1.67 million in U.S. currency into Mexico through Nogales crossings, officials said.

On Sunday, Customs and Border Protection officers conducting outbound inspections at the Dennis DeConcini Port referred Cosme Barcelo-Quijada, 56, a legal permanent resident alien who lives in Yuma, for further inspection, according to the Customs and Border Protection.

During a search of Barcelo-Quijada's Toyota truck, a CBP dog detected currency hidden inside the dashboard and roof. The unreported cash totaled about $1.66 million, a news release said. The money was seized.

On Saturday, officers at the Mariposa Port of Entry referred Jose Luis Verastica-Muñoz, 34, of Nogales, Sonora, for further inspection of his Toyota sedan. After a CBP dog alerted to the presence of hidden currency, officers searched Verastica-Muñoz and his vehicle and found unreported cash in his waistband and in the vehicle's dashboard, the agency said. The vehicle and $14,000 were seized.

The two men were arrested.

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