Monday, October 08, 2007

We are a free country in name only example #21332

Did you know that if you are leaving this country and you have more than $10,000 in cash on you have to let the government know?

So began an almost two-year battle between Zapeta and the U.S. government over whether he is legally entitled to the money after failing to declare that he was carrying more than $10,000 in U.S. currency out of the country, as the law requires. In January, a U.S. District Judge ruled the government could keep all the money but $10,000, which is to be returned to Zapeta. The case is under appeal.

Which brings up interesting legal questions. Zapeta came into this country illegally, what if he had claimed that the $60k that he had on hand was what he brought into this country? Would that money still have been subject to forfeiture? If everything he earned wasn't legal, why was the government saying he could keep $10k. Why don't they keep the whole thing?

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