A security officer in the Philippines is under investigation for allegedly stealing $300 from a passenger and attempting to swallow the stolen cash.
Caught on cam: The incident, which occurred on Sept. 8, involved a female security officer at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 1 who allegedly pilfered money from a departing Chinese passenger during a manual bag inspection.
CCTV footage captured security screening officer (SSO) Irency Morados turning away from another passenger and discreetly placing something into her waist area. A report by airport authorities detailed that X-ray operator Regino Allen Pollante handed a bottle of water to Morados, who appeared to be “edgy and restless,” in an act of seeming “connivance,” according to Manila Bulletin. She is then seen attempting to swallow the stolen bills, even as her supervisor, Abraham de Luna, “was seemingly communicating with her,” the report noted.
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Maximum penalty: While de Luna, who was accused of “apparently ensuring that the bills are dispatched to preclude any evidence,” has been suspended along with Morados and Pollante, and their access passes revoked, the investigation continues to determine the full extent of the alleged theft and any potential accomplices.
Transportation Secretary Jaime Bautista has authorized the Office of Transportation Security (OTS) to take immediate action, directing them to file charges and impose the “maximum penalty” against all involved.
While it remains uncertain whether the passenger, named Mr. Cai, will pursue criminal charges, airport authorities have already coordinated with the Philippine National Police’s Aviation Security Group.
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Social media reactions: This incident has garnered attention online, with social media users expressing a range of reactions from humor to criticism.
“Wait… So how will she get those bills back?” wondered a user on X.
“Talk about desperation!” a commenter wrote.
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“I might re-think my plan to visit the Philippines this year,” commented another.
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