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Criminal Resource Manual

1373. Unlawful Importing Or Exporting Of Certain Vehicles And Equipment

Title 19 U.S.C. § 1627a(a) authorizes the Secretary of the Treasury to impose a civil penalty not to exceed $10,000 for knowingly importing, exporting, or attempting to import or export any stolen self-propelled vehicle, vessel, aircraft, or part of a self-propelled vehicle, vessel, or aircraft, or any self-propelled vehicle or part of a self-propelled vehicle from which the identification number has been removed, obliterated, tampered with, or altered.

Section 1627a(b) of Title 19 gives the Secretary of the Treasury authority to prescribe a regulation requiring that any person, before exporting a used self-propelled vehicle present to the appropriate customs officer both the vehicle and a document describing such vehicle that includes the identification number. Failure to comply with this requirement carries a civil penalty of $500 for each violation.

The term "self-propelled vehicle" includes any automobile, truck, tractor, bus, motorcycle, mobile home, self-propelled agricultural machinery, self-propelled construction equipment, self-propelled special use equipment, and any other self-propelled vehicle designed for running on land, but not on rail. Section 1627a(d) of Title 19 permits customs officers to exchange information concerning activities covered by 19 U.S.C. § 1627a with other law enforcement agencies and with organizations engaged in theft prevention activities (e.g., the National Insurance Crime Bureau) designated by the Secretary of the Treasury.

The Department of the Treasury's implementing regulations relating to exporting used self-propelled vehicles, vessels, aircraft or parts thereof are set forth in 19 C.F.R. Part 192.

[cited in USAM 9-61.700]