Four screening officers probed over Manila airport theft case

A female Naia security officer is seen swallowing the missing US$300. - MIAA CCTV Screengrab courtesy of Raoul Esperas

MANILA (Philippine Daily Inquirer/Asia News Network): The Office for Transportation Security (OTS) is investigating four screening officers allegedly involved in a theft incident at Ninoy Aquino International Airport, where one allegedly swallowed US$300 in cash.

On Sept 8, a checkpoint supervisor reported that a passenger lost $300 at Naia Terminal 1. CCTV footage showed that a female security officer stole and swallowed the missing cash.

According to OTS Administrator Ma. O Aplasca, three more security officers have been identified as accomplices.

“There are four screening officers now being investigated, and [it] possibly has something to do with the incident,” Aplasca said in an ANC interview on Friday.

Aplasca said that despite all the evidence gathered, the main culprit behind the thieving incident continues to deny that she stole or swallowed cash.

“But based on the evidence gathered by our investigators, I think we have evidence to charge her and her accomplices,” Aplasca added.

The OTS chief said that Transportation Secretary Jaime Bautista has already ordered the agency to file administrative and criminal cases against the personnel involved.

Aplasca mentioned that while this marks the fifth recorded theft incident at Naia in 2023, it’s the first instance where an officer resorted to swallowing stolen cash.

To combat such incidents, Aplasca said the OTS has already initiated several initiatives like removing the pockets from personnel’s uniforms, banning wearing jackets, revamping assignments, and placing additional CCTV cameras near checkpoints.

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Philippines , airport , security , theft


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