​American Man Arrested With $5 Million Cash Found In Sydney​​

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January 24, 2021

An American has been arrested with $5 million in Australian dollars found in his Sydney apartment on Jan. 23. The American stockpile is one of the biggest cash halts of crime proceeds in the country’s history.

Australian Federal Police Commissioner Tony Negus said Thursday that a 58-year-old U.S. citizen had appeared in a Sydney court on Wednesday charged with dealing with the suspected proceeds of crime. The maximum penalty for the charge is three years in prison.

“This is one of Australia’s largest cash seizures” of crime proceeds, Negus said.

The man, whom police have not named, arrived in Australia from Costa Rica two days before his arrest on Saturday at an apartment near Sydney airport, Negus said. Police found the Australian currency stuffed into seven suitcases in an apartment where the man was staying. The man denied the money was his, Negus said.

The seizure was revealed Thursday as part of a year-long investigation into money laundering in Australia.

The Australian Crime Commission-led task force has seized AU$580 million in drugs and assets in the past year, including AU$26 million in cash suspected to be proceeds of crime, the commission said in a statement.

The commission said the task force had disrupted 18 criminal groups and made 105 arrests.

The commission’s acting chief executive Paul Jevtovic said the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration had helped the task force disrupt illicit international money flows.

The American arrested with $5 million Sydney story first appeared in the news on Jan. 23.