Wednesday , May 29 2024

14 Spanish airport staff arrested for stealing items worth $2M from checked-in bags

Spanish police have detained a group of 14 employees at Tenerife South airport for suspicions of stealing 1.93 million euros (US$2.1 million) worth of items from tourists’ checked bags.

The arrests were made late last week, and 20 other airport employees are also under investigation in the same theft case, Business Insider reported earlier this week.

The move came after police received complaints filed by passengers about missing items.

The officers then carried out multiple searches at the employees’ lockers, vehicles and houses and found a range of stolen items that included 13,000 euros in cash, 29 luxury watches, 120 items of jewelry, 22 mobile phones, and electronic devices.

Authorities believed the thefts occurred when luggage was placed in the aircraft’s hold, with the suspects opening the bags and removing valuables when they were out of sight of passengers and other employees, Aeroflap reported.

According to Euronews, Tenerife South Airport welcomes about 11 million passengers a year, mostly European tourists seeking a pleasant climate.

Thefts carried out by airport staff have been frequently reported.

A female security officer at Ninoy Aquino International Airport was put under investigation in September after being caught in a video swallowing $300 in cash stolen from a Chinese passenger’s wallet.

Earlier this year, five airport security personnel were sacked for stealing $200 from a Thai tourist at Ninoy Airport.

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