The cruise industry promotes the safety and security of cruising by telling the public that all luggage is carefully x-rayed before being loaded onto cruise ships.
Post 9/11, the concern that terrorists may target cruise ships led to the implementation of the International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) code which requires that all cruise passenger baggage be subjected to x-ray machines to check for explosive devices.
Sounds comforting, right? Maybe not.
It seems that two security officers at the Port of Miami operating the baggage x-ray machines were not looking for bombs or detonation devices. They were looking for stuff to steal.
According to the Miami New Times and Local NBC Channel 6, two security officers were involved in a scheme to steal electronic equipment from cruise ship passengers luggage and sell the stolen goods on Craigslist.
Jean Russell Thomas, age 30, and Sherece Renee Nelson, age 25, were arrested in the criminal operation.
Earlier this month, a passenger from the Carnival Victory complained that that after checking her bags for departure, they did not arrive in her cabin. When the bags finally arrived, the woman’s iPad was missing. She notified police.
Security video showed security guard Thomas, working as an x-ray screener, handling a bag that had been removed from the belt. The police report said:
"The defendant is then observed standing up and adjusting an item in which he had placed into his pants (rear) underneath his shirt and then placing the bag back onto the belt where it would be transferred to the ship."
Thomas later listed two iPads for sale on Craigslist. The iPads matched the description of the missing iPad as well as another iPad reported missing from luggage of another cruise passenger.
Undercover police officers called Thomas and arranged to buy an iPad. Thomas showed up along with Nelson, who acted as a look out according to the newspapers.
Nelson was arrested for dealing in stolen property.
Thomas was arrested for grand theft, dealing in stolen goods and, this one cracks me up, driving with a suspended driver’s license (habitual).
Where did the cruise port find these dim whits to work as security guards?
Like this story? Try reading Stolen iPhone Adventures Aboard the Disney Wonder Cruise Ship