Airport cleaners caught thieving from passenger luggage

by William ASTON on July 30, 2010

Two cleaners at Luton Airport have been sentenced by local authorities after being caught red-handed.

The pair was spotted on surveillance cameras in the act of pilfering from passenger luggage, opening bags as the travelled on the baggage carousel and taking out items before the bags passed through to the baggage claim area.

Anthony Currant, 65, of Bolingbroke Road, Luton and Abul Hussain, 30, of Claremont Road in the downtown area, were both given custodial services by Bedfordshire Police after each man admitted to six separate charges of theft by an employee. The Luton Crown Court last Friday sentenced Currant to six months in prison, while Hussain was sentenced to three months.

In what was a simple sting operation, the pair was caught by police back in February, after officers placed hidden cameras in an enclosed room at the airport where the inbound flight baggage passed through before being exposed to passengers. The couple was spotted rifling through a number of bags as the passed on the conveyor belt. The covert camera footage clearly showed the cleaners stealing from the bags. Since the pair was arrested by police, the instances of lost property or theft claims have fallen by almost 80 per cent at Luton Airport.

According to the London Luton Airport Safer Neighbourhood Team’s Sergeant Steve Farrer, the harsh sentencing was done in order to send a message that the airport would not tolerate crime, and to reassure passengers that luggage security, and passenger peace of mind, is taken very seriously. Around 700,000 passengers pass through the facility every month.

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