A security screening officer from Manila’s Ninoy Aquino International Airport (MNL) is facing the “maximum penalty” after being caught on surveillance video swallowing $300 in cash taken from a passenger.
The alleged theft occurred on September 8, 2023 at the airport’s departure area at Terminal 1.
A departing Chinese traveler reported discovering his wallet open and cash missing after going through the terminal’s security checkpoint.
The officers who screened the passenger were then subjected to manual inspection, where no evidence was found.
This prompted airport authorities to review CCTV footage of the security checkpoint, where a female security screening officer was found to have taken and swallowed three US $100 bills, downing the evidence with a bottle of water.
Local news reported that Philippine transportation secretary Jaime Bautista has authorized the Office of Transportation Security (OTS) to impose the “maximum penalty” to personnel found guilty in the incident.
This is not the first highly publicized theft incident at MNL airport. In February and March 2023, in separate incidents, security screening officers were caught on surveillance video stealing passengers’ cash and personal belongings, including a watch.
Airport authorities suggested implementing a “no pocket policy” in the uniforms and jackets of screening personnel.