I'm Doug, and I'm very sorry to hear of your situation.
Yes, by all means, fight the seizure. The law is intended to prevent money laundering and drug cartels---not the unwitting citizen who sends too much cash to a friend. Yes, your SSAN will be part of the equation, but so long as you can explain where the money came from---no problem.
You are dealing with a criminal investigation
right now---not a federal tax situation. There is no reason to believe that the IRS will become involved for any reason in this issue---so long as you have a good explanation and the money trail is solid. If it is flaky---then for 16 grand---it isn't worth the bother. Either way, you are on their radar---so claiming cash which was sent in ignorance will not be a problem for you.
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I wish you the best in 2012,