(Laredo, Texas) Last Monday, Severiano Perez Molina was found guilty by a federal jury of trying to smuggle contraband out of the United States. After a routine traffic stop, a police dog alerted on Perez Molina's vehicle and a search found 50 bundles of cash worth $909,830 inside a modified gas tank.
Perez Molina denied having knowledge of the cash but said that he was being paid $1,000 to drive the vehicle from Monterrey, Mexico, to Dallas, where "something" would be put in the car.
He had no knowledge, my muscled caboose! My guess is he's probably made the trip dozens of times. After all, the drug traffickers can't use wire transfers, so their proceeds have to be smuggled out of the U.S.
Given that most resources are directed to stopping smuggling of people and contraband coming into the U.S., I get the odd feeling that people and contraband going out of the U.S. are subjected to considerably less scrutiny. And, since the U.S. is doing such a urine-poor job on the goesinta, I have to imagine that the goesouta is probably worse. In any event, people hauling million-dollar bundles of cash into Mexico are definitely in the drug trade. Migrant workers are not sending that kind of money back to their families inside modified gas tanks.
Companion post at Interested-Participant.