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Lucie R, 47-year old Air France flight attendant dubbed as “Mile High Pickpocket“, is facing ten years in prison after admitting stealing from business class passengers as they slept on long-haul flights typically on flight from France to far east countries. She was finally arrested when she got off a Tokyo to Paris flight at 4.30am (local time)  last Friday.

‘It would all go missing on the routes she was working on,’ said a source close to investigators, who looked at 142 flights taken by the woman, who is married with children.

‘She knew that many of the passengers would fall asleep following a large meal and lots of alcohol.

‘This is the time that she would start rifling through their property, helping herself to whatever she could find.’

[Daily Mail]

 

She would steal credit cards, designer jewellery and cash as the passengers would fall asleep after having alcohol and big meal. The racket seemed to have been successful for her as despite her $61,000 annual salary, she would  regularly turned up for work in a top-of-the-range sports car and was buying plush apartments close to the airports where she worked.

Have you guys ever had any theft on flights? I have never seen or heard one before!

[Mizozo.com]

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On March 2 2010, a Corendon Airlines flight (Boeing 737) was getting ready at Amsterdam’s Schipol Airport to take off for Ankara, Turkey with 101 passengers on board. Little did any passenger on the flight knew that the 41-year pilot Thomas Salme who was about to fly the plane didn’t have a license to fly. He was apprehended minutes before take off.

A Boeing 737 from the airline Corendon. The Swedish pilot was preparing to take off with a similar plane when he was arrested

 

 Dutch police said they were able to arrest the 41-year-old on suspicion of holding a fake pilot licence thanks to a tip-off from the Swedish authorities.

The Swede, resident in Milan, had once possessed a Commercial Pilot’s Licence (CPL) but this had long since expired, Dutch police said. He subsequently forged an Airline Transport Pilot Licence (ATPL), the highest level of aircraft pilot licence and one which enabled him to fly large passenger planes.Source: www.thelocal.se

 

Interestingly, he had flown for 13 years with a forged license for companies in the UK, Belgium and Italy, spending a total of 10,000 unlicensed hours in the air. All he had was an expired commercial pilot licence for an airplane much smaller than a a Boeing 737.

Despite the seriousness of the forgery that would jeopardize the lives of passengers and crew, Salme was just fined for 2000 euros and banned for flying for 12 months.

Makes you wonder, shouldn’t the airline (Corendon Airlines) should also be punished for not making sure that Salme had a legitimate license?

Mizozo.com

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Three weeks back Keith Wilson King, 61,was noticed by an officer picking up a random bag at Phoenix’s Sky Harbor Airport. He was given a citation but then he returned back. He was arrested and a search at his home found 1000+ bags with identification tags, the owners’ names erased from the bag.

From mizozo.com

Keith Wilson and his wife, Stacy Lynne Legg-King, 38, were arrested Monday, and each was booked into jail on charges of theft of property and possession of stolen property.

From www.azcentral.com

Detectives uncovered nearly 1,000 pieces of stolen luggage Tuesday while serving a search warrant at a home in the northwest Valley, linking the items to Keith King, who’s accused of plucking the bags off airport

baggage carousels. Police officers arrested King three weeks ago at the airport after an officer noticed him grabbing a random bag off one of the carousels. He was given a misdemeanor-theft citation and released, though police said he returned to the airport days later.

King, 61, was shown on a surveillance video parking in an airport garage and walking to the baggage-claim area to steal luggage, said Officer James Holmes, a Phoenix police spokesman.

King and his wife, Stacy Legg King, 38, were arrested Monday at their home near Northern and 175th avenues. They were booked on suspicion of theft and possession of stolen property – leaving detectives to try and track the missing items, which could include electronics and clothes, among other things.

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In 2006 Raed Jarrar (a US resident) was waiting to board his flight at New York’s JFK airport when he was ordered to remove his shirt since it was making passengers uncomfortable. The t-shirt read “We Will Not Be Silent” in both Arabic and English.

The Transporation Security Authority (TSA) and JetBlue airlines agreeed to settle for a total payout of $240,000.

On a similar event, last week an Air Tran flight ordered a Muslim family (US citizens) off a flight after un-comfort over their talk over what seats are safer in an airplane.

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A 22 year man who works (worked?) as an Airport cleaner at Detroit Metropolitan Airport came up with a novel idea to impress his 18-year old girlfriend. Right after midnight, he brought his girlfriend with him to work (using his own security badge to pass through the security doors) and took her on a Northwest Airlines airplane (I wonder why? 😉 ). One small problem, at an airport there are cameras everywhere and soon Detroit Metro Police searched the plane and since the woman was unable to produce valid clearance and ID, the couple was arrested.

From Detroit News

According to airport spokesman Michael Conway, it turned out that a
starry-eyed airplane cleaner decided to impress his girlfriend by
bringing her onto the airplane.
“It happened on the midnight shift,” Conway said.
“He decided to bring her to work with him. He swept her through using his security badge, but she didn’t have clearance. It all happened in the middle of the night, but guess what: Cameras are everywhere!”
Airport police arrived and arrested both after the woman was unable to produce a proper security badge.
“Both have been charged with violation of an airport ordinance,” Conway said.
“It’s a misdemeanor. Security personnel also thoroughly searched the plane, which wasn’t delayed for its flight.”

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By November 20th, all the US Airports will have designated TSA passenger security-check lanes called “family lanes” to move through security checks and inspections at “their own pace”. The “popular” lanes had been tested earlier at 48 airports “provide a space for families and passengers who don’t travel very often to move through security at their own pace“.

I might sound a little selfish, but it is great for people like us who travel a lot and know how to zip through security with our shoes, belts, laptop(s), etc out in the bins well before our turn :).

From TSA.gov

Families, and individuals traveling with medically necessary liquids
this holiday season will be able to take advantage of the
Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) popular family lanes,
regardless of which airport they use.
The lanes, part of TSA’s Diamond Self-Select program currently
available at 48 airports, allow families, individuals unfamiliar with
air travel procedures and travelers with special needs to go through
security at their own pace. Individuals carrying medically necessary
liquids, aerosols and gels in excess of three ounces
will also be
directed to these popular lanes
. Individuals traveling with liquids,
gels and aerosols within 3-1-1 limits will not experience any change to
their screening procedures.

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Earlier, I had blogged about TSA approved laptop bags that will allow people to pass through security without taking the laptops out (one of the things about flying that I really hate). Belkin just launched a new laptop bag called “FlyThru” that is checkpoint friendly and “meets the guidelines set forth by TSA, with the business traveler in mind“.

Details about the bag (from Belkin) –

FlyThru Laptop Case (F8N094) – $59.99

  • Smart design isolates laptop for easy screening
  • Secure compartments organize accessories
  • Designed with minimal metal zippers and hardware for screening clarity
  • Durable with ample storage, ideal for busy professionals on the go
  • Fits most standard and widescreen laptops up to 15.4″

Now you can also show your love to the TSA Agents.

Now can someone please invent a TSA-approved pair of shoes??? 🙂

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