A Chinese woman has been arrested and accused of offering bribes to a US customs officer, including offers for sex, after being caught with $160,000 in undeclared goods.
This past July, 55 year-old Yang Hong arrived at John F. Kennedy Airport in New York City from Paris with her daughter, a student at the Fashion Institute of Technology. A Customs and Border Protection officer found a number of undeclared goods in the daughter’s suitcase including expensive pocketbooks, wristwatches, a fur coat, and jewelry.
Concerned that her daughter may be fined, Yang gave the officer a piece of paper with her name and phone number written on it. Yang told the officer she would pay him $10,000 and give him a luxury wristwatch if he would allow her daughter to pass through customs with the undeclared goods.
Following Yang’s offer, the officer momentarily left the room to confer with his superiors. Unbenownest to Yang, when he returned, he was equipped with a hidden recorder. The officer gave the piece of paper back to Yang, who increased the offer by adding that she would “sleep with him” as well as give him a free trip to China. Suffice it to say, the officer was not impressed, however he let Yang and her daughter go pending further investigation.
Last weekend, Yang was arrested and charged with customs fraud by U.S. Homeland Security agents after attempting to board a flight for China. She was released on $250,000 bail on Monday.
Yang’s lawyer Robert Gottleib said, “There was clearly a misunderstanding that unfortunately has resulted in an unjust arrest of a wonderful woman.”