TAIPEI (Taiwan News) –Two passengers from Singapore were caught carrying nearly NT$1 million (US$33,000) in undeclared cash, most of which was seized by customs authorities at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport.
The two, a 33-year-old woman surnamed Chen and a 27-year-old woman surnamed Soh, were found to be carrying NT$998,000 in cash inside one of their hand bags at an X-ray checkpoint before taking their flight to leave Taiwan, according to airport police.
Customs officials returned NT$100,000 to each of the women but seized the remainder.
The travelers reacted very angrily to the confiscation and complained that they were not aware of about Taiwan's new regulations for currencies carried by in- and outbound travelers.
According to an amendment to the Money Laundering Control Act, passengers traveling in or out of Taiwan with more than NT$100,000 or 20,000 Chinese yuan or any foreign currency worth more than US$10,000 in cash are required to declare it.
Moreover, passengers must also declare any objects worth more than US$10,000, gold in excess of US$20,000 in value, or diamonds, jewelry and platinum in excess of NT$500,000 in value.
Despite the government's efforts to publicize the new regulations aimed at stemming money laundering, many travelers have been found leaving or entering the country with large amounts of cash that should have been declared but was not.