A South Texas man driving to Mexico faces up to five years in prison for trying to smuggling more than $610,000 hidden in a spare tire.
Prosecutors say 43-year-old Domingo Quesada-Hernandez of Brownsville pleaded guilty Tuesday to evading currency reporting requirements. He's free on bond pending sentencing this spring.
The money was seized during a May 2012 inspection at the Gateway International Port of Entry in Brownsville. Investigators say Quesada-Hernandez was driving a pickup truck and denied having any cash in excess of the $10,000 reporting rules.
Officers noticed fresh markings on the spare tire, which appeared to be larger than the other tires on the pickup. An X-ray revealed the taped bundles of cash in the spare tire.