We’ve gotta hand it to border officers: It can’t be easy to figure out that someone is smuggling a whole lot of cash in her bra without being creepy. “Eyes up here, buddy!” and all of that. Despite that potentially tricky situation, two Canadian women were stopped from entering the country after officials at the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel discovered $59,000 in cash squirreled away in their brassieres.
The Detroit Free Press cites a criminal complaint filed in Detroit federal court that lays out how the whole bra bust went down. The two women are mother and daughter, and were headed to the Detroit Metro Airport en route to Lebanon to visit family.
Things got fishy when the mother told a customs and border official that she had $3,300 in Canadian money on her. After she was asked about U.S. reporting laws — you must declare it if you’re bringing an excess of $10,000 into the country — she once again stated that she only had $3,300.
Perhaps officials thought something was off, or maybe her bra looked oddly lumpy, it’s unclear. But her car was pulled over for a secondary inspection, whereupon officials found another $15,000 Canadian in her belongings.
Enter the pat-down, where “A bulky mass was discovered on the bra,” the complaint stated.
All told, she had four bags sewn into the lining of her bra, totaling $39,000 in Canadian currency. Her 16-year-old daughter was also searched, resulting in a further $20,000 in cash. The mother said she’d been the one behind the sewing scheme, because she didn’t want it to get stolen or tip off her boyfriend — the driver — how much she had.
Turns out she’d been arrested for theft before, and as such wasn’t admissible for entry into the U.S. She was charged with bulk cash smuggling and making false statements to a federal agent, while her daughter wasn’t charged at all.
Talk about a traumatic experience — “Hey, Mom? Remember that time you sewed wads of cash into my bra when I was a teenager and I had to be searched by federal agents? That wasn’t so great.”
Mother, daughter stopped at Windsor tunnel carrying $59,000 stuffed in their bras [Detroit Free Press]