Customs discover €130,000 in undeclared cash on man about to travel to Istanbul

The money was found by customs officials under a false bottom in the passenger’s hand luggage

The man was found to be concealing almost €130,000 in undeclared cash
The man was found to be concealing almost €130,000 in undeclared cash

A Libyan national who was about to catch a flight to Istanbul from Malta airport has been caught by customs officials with almost €130,000 in undeclared cash.

The money was found during a routine exercise by Customs’ anti-money laundering team, who noticed a false bottom in the passenger’s hand luggage as they were searching it.

A total of €127,506 in large denominations were subsequently elevated from this hidden compartment.

In a statement on Thursday, customs said that this is the second largest undeclared cash seizure made by the Customs Anti Money Laundering Section, making 2019 a record-breaking year in terms of undeclared cash seizures.

The police Anti-Money Laundering section was immediately informed about the incident, and subsequently arrested the passenger.

In accordance with European and national law, €10,000 of the undeclared cash were returned to the passenger, while the rest were held pending the investigation.

Customs highlighted that, only two day ago, Sophie - a customs sniffer dog - detected that a Ukranian national travelling to Istanbul also had a large amount of cash on him.

It was discovered that he was carrying €10,559, and he later agreed to an out of court settlement were he forfeited the €559 which were above the maximum amount of cash which one can travel with without declaring it.

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