Been jailed at Nepal 76 days for declaring money not getting certificate, I was sensitive to money issues. Here were some unfortunate incidences.
1. US/ San Francisco
a. My girl friend took a flight from Chicago to Japan via San Francisco. She declared at Chicago and wan told need not since she flew to San Francisco. She didn't find a custom officer at San Francisco terminal and boarded he flight to Japan at a near gate. Custom officers took her out of the plane and confiscated her $ 150,000. The custom sent a regular mail informing her for arbitration in 40 days. She didn't notice the letter and missed the date. She was fined 20% and the rest money was sent in check by, regular mail, to her.
b. My teammates declared $180,000 at San Francisco. Another teammate handed him $10,000 before boarding flight to London. The declaring person was searched before boarding flight finding $190,000. The money was confiscated and was returned after a year's legal effort.
No need declaring money at Macau. A teammate brought HK$ 1,500,000 from Singapore. He asked custom officers whether he needed declaring? The money was confiscated for suspicious of money laundry. He was asked providing proof for source of fund and the money was returned after a year's legal efforts.
Four APs couldn't find custom officers at red channel for declaring. They went to green channel and declared $80,000. The money was carried by two persons. $60,000 was confiscated. Tape recording revealed at trials was talking among custom officers at red channel that they hid from them trapping them. The case was under legal procedures.
A teammate brought HK$ 1,500,000 into Taiwan and declared. The money was not declared few days later taking out of the country by the same person. The money was confiscated and was under legal procedures.
My friend carried $40,000 local money taking a local flight from M City. The money was found going through security check. He was brought to security officer and $24,000 was taken by seven policemen and armed soldiers. He was escorted boarding the flight.
I declared $210,000 in then took $240,000 out of the country few days later. The money was found and I was taking to a room counting the money by a custom officer. He asked bluntly for bribe and I gave him $3,000 traveler checks.
I and two Israeli counters brought $70,000 into Colombia at Barranquilla from Panama. We were told one could only bring in or out $10,000, declared or not. We asked not entering the country but was refused. We were told $40,000 would be confiscated and would be returned after 20% fine. I found a local connection who negotiated with the custom. We filed a petition with a contract showing the money was for buying a machine. The government approved releasing the money but 20% bribe was asked still. The custom claimed the money was for speeding the process.
Carrying bankroll traveling was the painful evil of traveling APs. Revealing these tragedies may help colleagues avoiding such hazards.