Security Thieving [Updated]

At Auckland International Airport two years ago, I encountered a petty official at the security check point with a petty attitude. I placed my computer on the conveyor belt and waited for it to go through. She insisted that I proceed through the X ray machine before my laptop did but I would not leave my computer unwatched.

I see people throwing wallets, keys and watches into the open trays and then marching on through the metal detectors, leaving the stuff on then conveyor belt, ready to be pushed through – by anyone. I put those items into my carry on bag out of sight and zipped away. It amazes me that people will lock their bags or get their checked in luggage shrink wrapped and then leave their passports, cash, ipads, laptops etc unguarded.

I actually believe most travellers are honest. From time to time, there will be dishonest passengers, however, who may pocket a wallet, Ipad or watch that is not theirs. By chance a couple of years ago, a guy picked up my laptop by mistake.  By chance,  we both had identical machines at the same security point at the same time. He came back with my laptop, thankfully.

Last week, a passenger, at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, surreptitiously picked up a $6000 Rolex watch and bracelet at the airport security checkpoint and put it into his laptop.

The mistake he made was that he was filmed doing it on CCTV.

Police  arrested the gentleman on Friday 17th wearing the Rolex watch (which was a woman’s watch).





  1. This was in the news last week. They caught the guy. When the police went to his address, he opened the door, and was wearing the Rolex watch . . .

  2. I once saw a bunch of young kids (to my eye, at least) who must have been heading off to Vegas. One of them dropped an envelope with what must have been several thousand dollars in it in the tray and tried to walkthrough. Fortunately the TSA screener stopped to see what it was and admonished him for carrying so much money with him and being so careless with it. This was before backscatter scanners, so at that point it was still okay to keep non-metal items on your person and walk through.

  3. Someone once tried to pick up my blackberry from the tray after the scanner. He was fast on that move too. Fortunately, my eyes are always on the items I put through the scanner. I told him off right away, and he gave it back to me. You absolutely need to be careful when going through security!

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