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Authorities discover nearly $4 million in an abandoned boat in Puerto Rico

U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agents, along with agents of the Drug Enforcement Administration, seized $3.7 million in undeclared currency found inside five duffle bags on board an abandoned vessel near the coast of Fajardo, Puerto Rico, on July 7, 2019.
Posted at 6:31 AM, Jul 09, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-09 10:05:09-04

(CNN) -- After border patrol agents in Puerto Rico chased after a boat on Sunday, they found five duffel bags stuffed with $3.7 million in cash.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents, along with the DEA, made the seizure after tracking the vessel that was traveling without lights from Puerto Rico to the US Virgin Islands. As authorities followed the boat, it made an abrupt turn back toward Fajardo, on the east coast of Puerto Rico, and landed near the Rio Fajardo.

Occupants in the vessel could be seen unloading bags, according to the press release. As agents closed in, they fled the scene.

"We remain committed to working with other federal and local law enforcement partners to detect and deter smuggling attempts throughout the Caribbean," Johnny Morales, director of air and marine operations for the Caribbean Air and Marine Branch, said in a statement Monday.

Inside the boat, the duffel bags full of cash were recovered along with a loaded pistol and 63 rounds of ammunition.

"CBP seized the currency under failure to declare and bulk cash smuggling laws," stated the press release.

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