Argentine Canines Help Confiscate $1.5 Million

By Dialogo
December 21, 2011

Around 300 dogs trained to sniff the vehicles and suitcases of travelers crossing the Argentine border have helped to confiscate 1.5 million smuggled dollars over the last six months, a customs official announced.

“We have 300 canines specialized in detecting dollars and euros, with more emphasis during the tourist season due to the numbers of tourists. The law allows travelers to take no more than $10,000 per person, out of the country,” Siomara Ayerán, the director of the customs service, said at a press conference.

The canines, Labradors and Golden Retrievers by breed, lend the services of their trained noses in the port terminals of the Argentine capital, from which ferry services depart for Uruguay, and at the land border crossings to that neighboring country.

In the Buenos Aires port terminal alone, “$1.5 million were seized in the last six months,” according to the official report.

“Argentina is exporting trained canines to Latin America and Africa. The dogs are taught to find cash the same way as when they look for drugs. The distinguishing factor is the ink on the bills,” Ayerán said.

In an upcoming phase, the bloodhounds will be used at the Argentine capital’s Jorge Newbery Metropolitan Airport (domestic flights and flights to neighboring countries) and also at the border crossings with Bolivia and Paraguay, according to sources at AFIP, the state revenue agency.