Venezuelan woman held with US$169,000 strapped to body

A Venezuelan national has been held at the Piarco International Airport with US$169,000 strapped to her body.

The woman was attempting to board a flight out of the country last Thursday.

Immigration officials say she could not properly account for the money.

Immigration sources told Guardian Media that the woman who was destined to Caracas walked through the airport security scanners and was later subjected to a body search by security officers of the Airports Authority. 

It was while the woman was being 'pat down' by the officers they discovered the money strapped to her body. 

She had failed to declare the money.

She was later handed over to Customs officers who also found in US$1500 in her handbag.

The woman, who is in her early 30s, claimed she was in the nail polish business and told officers she traveled frequently to Trinidad.

She was later handed over to police for questioning.

Under the  Customs Act all arriving and departing passengers at the airport or seaports are required to declare to a Customs officer on duty whether they are carrying cash currency of monetary instruments in excess of US $5,000 or its equivalent in any currency or TT$20,000.

Anyone who travels in excess of this amount and declares it will then have to justify the funds.

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