TSA ‘bad apples’ steal thousands from baggage of passengers

Steven Nelson Associate Editor
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Two agents working for the Transportation Security Administration have been arrested after stealing from passengers at New York’s JFK airport.

The New York Daily News reports that Davon Webb and Persad Coumar were ratted out by a colleague. Both have worked for the TSA for over five years.

The theft that doomed the two involved pocketing $40,000 from a passenger’s bag. After being interrogated they confessed to stealing as much as $160,000 from passengers, selecting victims’ bags at random.

A representative of the TSA told the Daily News that the agency’s 50,000 employees should not be stigmatized by the “disgraceful actions of a few.”

The “few” bad apples include Michael Arato, a Newark TSA supervisor who pleaded guilty on Monday to stealing thousands of dollars from passengers at the New Jersey airport.

Arato partnered with a subordinate TSA agent to conduct the thefts. The two agents stole tens of thousands of dollars from passengers while either subjecting them to additional screening or while screening their bags.

Yet another TSA employee was arrested on January 27 in Memphis, Tennessee for attempting to steal a passenger’s laptop from a screening area.