TSA: Not Just Abusers Any More
TSA Agents Charged With Grand Larceny
by Daniel Sayani
The New American
The Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) has once again found itself embroiled in controversy, as two of its agents were discovered stealing $39,000 from passengers’ checked luggage, and were charged Wednesday. A law enforcement source reports that TSA agents Couman Perad and Davon Webb both admitted to looting a total of up to $160,000 from a variety of passengers in a period of several months at New York City’s John F. Kennedy International Airport, and that the two agents committed the theft of $39,000 on January 30, the same day the investigation into their theft began. According to the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, as reported in the New York Post:
Davon Webb, 30, and Couman Perad, who turned 36 today, were arrested after admitting they had regularly stolen from checked bags, sources said.
In one instance, Perad, who joined the Transportation Security Administration in 2002, and Webb, who has been an agent since 2004, stole $39,000 on Jan. 30 from a bag at Terminal 8, sources said.
The passenger whose money was stolen was on his way to Argentina, sources said.
The $39,000 was later found in their homes after TSA notified Port Authority police, sources said.
Perad and Webb would screen bags looking for loot, and then swipe the cash once the luggage was opened in a private screening room, sources said.
The two TSA agents will be charged with grand larceny, possession of stolen property and official misconduct; however, their crimes are not without substantial precedent, as there have been several other high-profile thefts of passengers’ property committed by TSA agents. On Monday, February 14, TSA agent Michael Arato was arraigned in U.S. District Court in Newark, New Jersey, for his admitted role in accepting bribes and kickbacks from a colleague who regularly stole money from passengers during security screenings, as reported by Reuters: