Hi,I'm Zoey and I'll be assisting you. I'm reviewing your question now. Please be patient while I research and compose a reply for you.
Is your "friend" someone you have met before, or is he just an internet contact? Where's the gold coming from? Ghana?
People who ask a question like this are the victim of a romance scam of some sort. The scenario is wildly improbable and it's just a way of getting you to wire $5,000 to a thief. If the gold is from Ghana, which is usually is, there's only one way to get gold into the US. That's through the Ghanaian government, who will only ship it to a verified buyer. Any other way would be illegal and the person would be arrested for smuggling. $5,000 wouldn't release the gold, which would be held for evidence as the fruit of a crime, nor would it release the person smuggling the gold out.
In one typical scam scenario, a victim thinks they're going to marry a Ghanaian heiress, who has supposedly put her inheritance into his name and is sending the gold to him so that they can live happily and wealthily ever after. In another typical scam scenario, the scammer claims to be a soldier serving in a war zone and the gold has been found and are the spoils of war.
Either way, there is no real gold. There is nothing to release. The person contacting you is a fraud and any documents and photos you've received are false as well. If you have heard from "customs" or a "barrister" they are fakes too, just confederates of the scammer.
If any of this sounds familiar, don't send any money, cease all contact with these frauds, and report the scam to the FBI at IC3.gov before you get hurt.
If you don't believe that it's a scam yet, reply to this thread and upload any documents and photos you have that you think may change my mind. I'll be happy to look them over and to give you more concrete evidence of fraud.
Just checking in to see if you need more help or any clarification of my answer. If so, please reply here on this question thread.