Police in the Italian city of Malpensa today arrested a Gambian attempting to board a flight with over 164 thousand euros hidden in a suitcase. The Gambian, a resident in Spain, was intercepted by the Italian Guardia di Finanza while he was about to leave for Banjul (Gambia) via Brussels with the money hidden among his belongings.
The Gambian passenger residing in Spain was asked to undergo a routine check by officials of the Financial Guard, the Italian customs, and the financial police. It is a body that is part of the Italian armed forces but reports directly to the Minister of the Economy and Finance.
The Italian police said the Gambian made an evasive declaration that he had only EUR 600 with him, raising the suspicion of the Italian agents. Additional control was extended to his numerous checked baggage, already onboard the aircraft. That was when the agents discovered sums of monies totaling 164,510 euros, separated into various paper packs and sealed with adhesive tape, hidden in The Gambian traveler’s personal belongings.
As required under Italy’s law, the Custom police seized 77,255 euros, equal to fifty percent of the sums that were not declared, plus an administrative fine of 10 thousand euros. The Italian Guardia di Finanza acted in its fight against cross-border illegal cash transfer.
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