Law enforcement authorities said Wednesday that two Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers had been arrested for stealing from bags at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport.
Queens District Attorney Richard Brown identified agents Davon Webb, 30 and Persad Coumar, 44, as the suspects. Coumar had been an agent since 2002. Webb was hired in 2004.
The officers are accused of stealing $39,000 from one bag on Jan. 30.
Sources told The New York Post that passenger whose money was stolen was on the way to Argentina.
An investigation began on Jan. 30 after another agent tipped Port Authority police. The money was later found in the agents’ homes.
The two agents worked together to pull off the scheme. Coumar would allegedly use an X-ray to find money in travelers’ bags. Webb would then allegedly mark the bags with tape, according to Brown.
Coumar would later allegedly extract the money in another luggage area.
The two have confessed to stealing as much as $160,000, police said.
The TSA was expected to fire the two men quickly, but had not done so by Wednesday morning.
“We will move swiftly and decisively to end the federal careers of any employee who engages in illegal activity on the job,” TSA spokeswoman Ann Davis told Reuters.
“TSA agents hold a position of trust and are supposed to search passengers and their baggage to ensure the safety of the flying public — not to enrich themselves,” Brown said. “Passengers must feel secure when they pass through our airports here in Queens County that they are not being targeted by those who would use their position of authority to steal the possessions of others.”