Mirtza Ocana Arrested - Smuggling $100K in Cash

Mirtza Ocana Arrested – Smuggling $100K in Cash

Tampa woman Mirtza Ocana, charged with smuggling over $100K into the U.S… from Cuba.

TAMPA, FL (STL.News) A Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Tampa investigation led to the arrest of a criminal complaint charging a Tampa woman with smuggling more than $100,000 in U.S. currency into the United States from Cuba.

If convicted on all counts, Mirtza Ocana, 38, faces a maximum penalty of five years in federal prison.

According to the complaint, Mirtza Ocana arrived at Tampa International Airport on an international flight from Cuba on February 5, 2024.  She claimed that she did not have more than $10,000, which is the limit that triggers reporting requirements on her person, and said she had nothing to declare.  However, during a routine inspection of her luggage, Department of Homeland Security agents recovered approximately $30,000 in bulk cash concealed in three wrapped packages.

Ocana then admitted that she flew from Cuba to Tampa two to three times per month to smuggle cash into the United States.  She also admitted that she knew it was illegal to bring bulk cash into the United States without reporting it.  Agents searched Ocana and discovered an additional $70,000 in cash hidden in her clothes.  Ocana’s flight history later revealed that she had flown from Cuba to Tampa 45 times since May 2023.

A complaint is merely a formal charge that a defendant has committed one or more violations of criminal law.  Every defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.

This case is being investigated by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection.  Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Florida Michael J. Buchanan will prosecute it.

SOURCE: U.S… Customs and Border Protection


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