Back to the future

Home 2024 Forums Opening Section General Topics Back to the future

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 42 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #83974

    Maybe it is time to add a “Legal Topic”

    I flew from Mexico to Laredo, Texas to take my 340 to the annual to Addison, Texas.
    The customs officer asked me to show the INVOICE of the work to BE DONE at the shop and the aircraft value too. 😯
    Obviously, I told him that I did not have an idea what he was asking me. He told me that I could not leave until I showed him those papers. 😯
    Then he asked me how long the airplane will be at USA and in Mexico. 😯
    Obviously I did not have an idea.
    Looking at his face ( 😈 ) I called the shop and tell them to send ANY paper to my e-mail to show it to this “officer”.
    After more than 2 hours he came out of his office and told me that I could leave. No ARROW, pilot certificate, photo ID, Medical, nothing. He wanted a paper that will be given in a future and questions with impossible answer.
    I was so disturbed that I could not fly the airplane to Addison. My hands were shaking badly.
    I left the 340 at the FBO and flew by United. A pilot would go for my 340.
    The line guy, who was close, told me that my mistake was to be mexican, brown and fly by myself my own airplane. Some people do not like that.
    Fourtunately my boys have learned that a pencil and an airplane have the same value for humans beings.
    By the way, they are US citizens and have green eyes.
    Any advise?

    Rodolfo
    1978 C340A RAM VII

    #97287

    I forgot to say that my 340 is N registry.

    Rodolfo
    1978 C340A RAM VII

    #97288

    You don’t have to be Mexican and brown-skinned to get that treatment from US customs. Although I’ve never been held for that long, I’ve had pretty bad luck with certain customs agents. Although I can say there have been some very good ones, there have also been some very bad ones. I’m as white as they come with blonde hair.

    There does tend to be a difference between different airports of entry. You might want to look into the possibility of clearing customs elsewhere in the future when you bring your plane into the country for its annual. There are certain places I simply will not land for clearing customs – perhaps this should be one of them for you.

    Sorry you had such a bad treatment. That’s really uncalled for – the guy was probably just jealous of your plane.

    #97291

    Customs agents have tremendous power and some of them abuse it. Different entry airports seem to have different attitudes. Coming from Mexico to Florida I have learned to avoid the Miami airports , especially Opalocka, and use Key West or Ft. Lauderdale. Perhaps some Forum members can suggest Texas alternatives. You should send a letter to AOPA as well. It`s not just racial. I`ve been badly treated more than once in your position. My sympathies for your experience. Glenn Carwell MD =”RENRIQUEZ”]Maybe it is time to add a “Legal Topic”

    I flew from Mexico to Laredo, Texas to take my 340 to the annual to Addison, Texas.
    The customs officer asked me to show the INVOICE of the work to BE DONE at the shop and the aircraft value too. 😯
    Obviously, I told him that I did not have an idea what he was asking me. He told me that I could not leave until I showed him those papers. 😯
    Then he asked me how long the airplane will be at USA and in Mexico. 😯
    Obviously I did not have an idea.
    Looking at his face ( 😈 ) I called the shop and tell them to send ANY paper to my e-mail to show it to this “officer”.
    After more than 2 hours he came out of his office and told me that I could leave. No ARROW, pilot certificate, photo ID, Medical, nothing. He wanted a paper that will be given in a future and questions with impossible answer.
    I was so disturbed that I could not fly the airplane to Addison. My hands were shaking badly.
    I left the 340 at the FBO and flew by United. A pilot would go for my 340.
    The line guy, who was close, told me that my mistake was to be mexican, brown and fly by myself my own airplane. Some people do not like that.
    Fourtunately my boys have learned that a pencil and an airplane have the same value for humans beings.
    By the way, they are US citizens and have green eyes.
    Any advise?

    Rodolfo
    1978 C340A RAM VII[/quote]

    #97292

    I don’t clear in the 421, but I do fly weekly to MTY. For the airports and customs, I would rank them as follows in S. Texas:

    SAT (GREAT, and you get to park at the gate too lol)
    BRO
    MFE
    LRD

    There are others, but this is my list for clearing. I usually don’t have many problems, but the other comments about customs can be true. I have never had them question anything I was doing and I am always carrying Mexican Nationals (with the proper documentation I might add). I am sorry you had these issues. Unfortunately, it is hard to track down why they asked you for this information. A call to the line supervisor, and then working your way up might get some questions answered.

    #97300

    Sorry you had such a bad experience Rodolfo.

    I can’t wait to ask Juan about this – He’s got to be just shaking his head at the absurdity of wanting an invoice before the work was done!

    Robert

    P.S. Let me know the next time you’re in Dallas – I’d love to meet you in person!

    #97311
    quote RCJOHNSON:

    Sorry you had such a bad experience Rodolfo.

    I can’t wait to ask Juan about this – He’s got to be just shaking his head at the absurdity of wanting an invoice before the work was done!

    Robert

    P.S. Let me know the next time you’re in Dallas – I’d love to meet you in person!

    I can imagine Wayne’s reaction, too…

    #97314

    I think we should have a fly-in in Mexico (Cancun or Puerto Vallarta?), and all clear thru Laredo. Imaging their reaction with the skies darkened with twin Cessna’s and the ramp full of pilot’s from all over the world… πŸ™‚

    Eric

    #97315
    quote EPANNING:

    I think we should have a fly-in in Mexico (Cancun or Puerto Vallarta?), and all clear thru Laredo. Imaging their reaction with the skies darkened with twin Cessna’s and the ramp full of pilot’s from all over the world… πŸ™‚

    Eric

    πŸ˜†

    I’m game!

    #97316

    Thank you guys for your support.

    But there is one thing that makes me worry:

    It seems that we can not do nothing and wait what will be the situation with an officer in the future.

    Can they ask you whatever they want?

    I think it should be a procedure, and if you are not in the list of the “bad guys” (which is an inteligence business) everybody should be happy.

    Silly me?

    Rodolfo
    1978 C340A RAM VII

    #97317

    Amen !

    #97318

    Unfortunately, DHS is one of those agencies where people have far too much power and far too little education for the most part. I’m not saying they’re all bad – I have met some very nice ones, and some who I’ve gotten to know reasonably well (at least as well as you know someone who you talk to for 5-10 minutes every couple months). However, I’ve also had some really bad ones.

    It truly is a crapshoot who you get for an agent – what kind of day that person has had, etc. Maybe he’s jealous of your plane, maybe he doesn’t like your haircut, maybe he doesn’t like that you’re brown, etc. If you’re on a watch list, obviously they’re going to question you more, but they shouldn’t be questioning you for bringing your US-registered plane to America to get its annual performed. It sounds to me like the guy was just being a jerk.

    They can effectively ask you whatever they want. Typically it’s better to just take the path of least resistance and answer them. Sometimes they are trying to “outsmart” you and get you to give some piece of information incriminating yourself. I was once questioned by some Kansas Bureau of Investigation folks (that’s another story), who, upon seeing my oxygen bottle and cannulas said “WHAT ARE THESE FOR?!?!?!” “It’s oxygen” “For what?!” “Breathing.”

    #97321

    I have been flying to USA and Mexico since a long time ago. Never had happened a situation like this at Laredo.
    In fact, I flew to Austin (Formula 1 races) few days ago with my family and cleared at Laredo.
    I take the 340 every 50 hours to the shop in USA.
    I am 50 now and I deserve to enjoy life. That is why I do not like traveling. I love airplanes (badly), that is my sin.

    This is a photo in my city airport where I went to welcome Matt Younkin earlier this year.

    Do I look like a bad guy?

    Rodolfo
    1978 C340A RAM VII


    Attachments:

    #97327
    rstanley
    Participant

      Rodolfo
      Was it DHS or Customs ?
      Did you get a badge number ?
      Cheers
      Richard

      #97332

      Anyone standing in front of a Beech 18 looks like my friend. πŸ™‚

    Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 42 total)
    • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.