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DEAR MR. O’LEARY: A LETTER FROM AN EXASPERATED PROPONENT OF NON-RACIAL PROFILING

DEAR MR. O’LEARY: A LETTER FROM AN EXASPERATED PROPONENT OF NON-RACIAL PROFILING

On 22 February 2020, an interview with Ryanair’s Chief Executive, Michael O’Leary, appeared in The Times in which he slated current airport security measures and argued that we should focus on young Muslim men as they were more likely to be terrorists. “Who are the bombers? They are going to be single males travelling on their own. If you are travelling with a family…
A new old approach to security? new threats, new challenges by Nina Brooks

A new old approach to security? new threats, new challenges by Nina Brooks

Aviation security has changed over the past ten years. New threats have emerged and existing threats have evolved, including chemicals, drones and cybersecurity. Airports now have to consider themselves a target, alongside flights themselves. The lines between safety and security are increasingly blurring, with protests and disruptions, not to mention the knock-on effect…
MICRO-EXPRESSIONS: FACT OR FICTION?

MICRO-EXPRESSIONS: FACT OR FICTION?

As an increasing number of industries, including aviation, are taking steps to incorporate behaviour detection within their security programmes, regulators are in search of academically-substantiated proof that the techniques being offered can indeed identify those with negative intent. For decades, many have promulgated the case for the identification of…
RISK-BASED SCREENING: what are the security and economic benefits?

RISK-BASED SCREENING: what are the security and economic benefits?

Risk-based screening does not treat all passengers as if each poses an equal threat. The goal is to allow screeners to concentrate more effort on passengers who present a higher risk while improving the efficiency of the screening system. This study concludes that such screening not only generally increases security and allows for more efficient and faster screening, but…
COMPUTER-BASED TRAINING: more than just enhancing X-ray screener performance

COMPUTER-BASED TRAINING: more than just enhancing X-ray screener performance

Computer-based training is universally used to enhance the performance of X-ray screeners, but it has so much more to offer. It has utility in training for the whole organisation, can be applied to counteract social engineering schemes used by cyber criminals, and provides a great opportunity to simulate out-of-the-ordinary occurrences and thereby help aviation security…

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23 FEBRUARY 2020: THE NETHERLANDS

Transavia revealed that they had experienced a data security breach, affecting 80,000 passengers who had travelled with the airline between 21 January and 31 January 2015, excluding passengers who flew to Egypt, Lapland or the Canary Islands. The data was stored in an email inbox file. The data contained full names, dates of birth, luggage and airport requirements. It did not include information such as passport data, address or credit card information.

23 FEBRUARY 2020: LOMÉ, TOGO

Three Burkina Faso nationals attempted to hijack a CEIBA flight that departed from Malabo and was en route to Lomé. The hijacking attempt occurred approximately one hour into the flight. Passengers and cabin crew were able to restrain the men.

26 NOVEMBER 2019: GASMATA, PAPUA NEW GUINEA

A charter airline, Tropicair, was refuelling in Gasmata when it was commandeered by eight men armed with guns and knives. The men forced the pilot to take off from Gasmata and land at an unused airstrip at Cape Matis where they stole the cargo and luggage from the flight and fled. There were no passengers on board and the pilot and aircraft were not harmed.

24 FEBRUARY 2019: CHATTOGRAM, BANGLADESH

Palash Ahmed attempted to hijack a Biman Bangladesh Airlines flight en route to Dubai from Dhaka, with a scheduled stopover in Chattogram (Chittagong). It was initially reported that Ahmed was carrying a gun and explosives and that he had fired two shots. Later, it was found that the gun and explosives were fake and that the shot sounds were caused by “cracker-like substances”. Ahmed demands were to speak to his wife and to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina about his wife. When the plane landed in Chattogram, Special Forces negotiated the release of all passengers and crew. When the hijacker refused to leave, the authorities launched an eight-minute raid to remove him from the aircraft, resulting in Ahmed being shot. He later died from his injuries.

4 FEBRUARY 2019: KHARTOUM, SUDAN

A Sudanese deportee attempted to hijack Tarco-Air flight 103 en route from Cairo to Khartoum. Crew managed to restrain the man and the flight continued safely to its intended destination.

31 JANUARY 2019: NAPAKIAK, ALASKA

A 16-year-old attempted to hijack a Yute Commuter Service plane during its four-minute flight from Napakiak to Bethel. The teenager, who was sitting in the front passenger seat of the Piper Cherokee, briefly grabbed the plane’s yoke causing the plane to dive towards the ground. A female passenger sitting behind the teenager was able to restrain him, allowing the pilot to regain control of the flight and return to Napakiak.

19 MARCH 2020: PERM, RUSSIA

An anonymous caller made a fake bomb threat against an Aeroflot flight from Moscow Sheremetyevo Airport to Perm Bolshoye Savino Airport.

14 MARCH 2020: MOSCOW, RUSSIA

Sheremetyevo International Airport received an email which contained bomb threats against three Aeroflot flights: a flight from Moscow to Tyumen; another from Irkutsk to Moscow, and a third from Moscow to Chelyabinsk, which made an emergency landing in Kazan.

5 MARCH 2020: OMSK, RUSSIA

A flight from Moscow to Omsk was searched upon landing after a post office at Sheremetyevo Airport received an anonymous bomb threat after the flight had taken off. The airport also received emails about bombs on two other flights: a flight from St. Petersburg to Simferopol and a flight from Moscow to Syktyvkar. All flights safely arrived at their destinations and the pilots did not request emergency landings.

28 MARCH 2020: AMMAN, JORDAN

Therese Halasa, 66, died at her home in Jordan. Halasa was 18 years old when she hijacked Sabena Flight 571 from Brussels to Lod. She was accompanied by three other members of the Palestinian Liberation Organisation, Rima Tannous, Ali Taha Abu Sneineh and Abdel-Aziz al-Atrash. The hijack ended when the aircraft landed in Israel and was liberated by Israeli forces disguised as airport workers and Red Cross members. Halasa and Tannous survived the hijack but were arrested. The Israeli force members included former Prime Minister Ehud Barak and current Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

19 MARCH 2020: GUAYAQUIL, ECUADOR

Protestors and the local government of Guayaquil blocked repatriation flights from landing and taking off at Jose Joaquin de Olmedo Airport because of fears of spreading the coronavirus throughout the city. An Iberia Airlines repatriation flight was blocked from landing by trucks parking on the runway. It was subsequently diverted to Quito. Guayaquil’s Mayor, Cynthia Viteri, who had been diagnosed with Covid-19, supported the action; however, the Ministry of Transport condemned it.

6 MARCH 2020: ASUNCION, PARAGUAY

Ronaldinho, Brazilian football star, and his brother Roberto were arrested at the Resort Yacht & Golf Club Paraguayo, where they were staying in order to attend a charity event. They were arrested for using a fake Paraguayan passport to enter Paraguay. Ronaldinho had his Spanish and Brazilian passports confiscated in July last year due to unpaid fines.

20 FEBRUARY 2020: CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA

TV presenter, Laura Whitmore, and her comedian boyfriend, Iain Stirling, criticised a photographer who had taken a picture of her and Stirling as she arrived at the airport. She accused the reporter of not respecting their privacy while she was mourning the suicide of her friend and fellow presenter, Caroline Flack.

19 FEBRUARY 2020: MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN

Lydia Beairsto, 44, was fired from her role as security manager for Mitchell International Airport after she fell victim to an email scam by someone posing as her boss, Brian Dranzik. The scammer asked Beairsto to buy $2,100 worth of gift vouchers – to gift to employees as a surprise – and to send a picture of the vouchers with the pin numbers exposed, which she did. Bearisto then grew suspicious when the scammer asked for more gift cards. The cards were redeemed in Saudi Arabia.

24 MARCH 2020: MOZAMBIQUE

António Pinto, former president of Mozambique Airlines, Hélder Fumo, former financial director for the airline and Mia Temporário, a director of Executive, which managed the airline’s in-flight magazine, Indico, were found guilty of embezzlement having diverted 50 million meticais (c. £609,000) through a service contract between LAM and Executive that was not fulfilled. Pinto and Fumo were jailed for 14 years each. Temporário was jailed for 12 years. In addition to this, all three culprits were ordered to pay 31 million meticais (c. £377,400) to the Mozambique state; the amount to be paid will be split equally between them all.

12 MARCH 2020: LISBON, PORTUGAL

Three SEF border officers were accused of beating a 40-year-old Ukrainian man to death at Lisbon Airport. The man had arrived in Lisbon from Turkey on 10 March. He was denied entry, and, after an altercation with border staff, he suffered an epileptic fit and was rushed to hospital. Two days later he returned to board a flight to Turkey when three border officers took him to a room without CCTV. He then died. He was found with his hands cuffed behind his back, and autopsy results showed that he had fractured ribs, which resulted in him suffocating to death.

10 MARCH 2020: MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA

Kipp Baldwin, 59, was suspected of stealing $125,000 (c. £101,000) worth of copper from Minneapolis-St Paul International Airport. Baldwin, an electrician who works for the Metropolitan Airports Commission, worked at the airport from Monday to Friday but would also come into work on the weekend. Last year the airport underwent infrastructure replacements on various piping, wiring, heating and air conditioning systems. This work was done by the contractor, Hunt Electric; however, Baldwin would pose as a Hunt worker to collect copper during the weekdays and weekends, and then hide them in a box until he could remove it from the airport. Baldwin took the copper to a scrap metal facility. At one facility, Baldwin is said to have made over 70 deliveries and was paid $145,722 (c. £118,000) from March 2015 to November 2019. Baldwin was allegedly selling scrap metal from 1995 and had 10 retirement accounts in his name worth $1.3million (c. £1,050,000).

16 FEBRUARY 2020: SAN JUAN, PUERTO RICO

Geraldine Rodriguez Olivares, 31, a famous twerker/dancer (better known as Gerry Hoops), accused two US immigration officers of sexually assaulting her at Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport. She was at the airport to catch a flight to Chile after dancing in a music video. She claimed that two agents took her and her friend aside into two separate rooms, where they were patted down by a female officer. The male immigration officers then told her that they recognised her from social media, told her that she had entered the country illegally on a tourist visa (rather than a work visa), and they were going to check her for drugs. She was then allegedly forced to twerk whilst the officers threw money at her and touched her inappropriately.

15 FEBRUARY 2020: LAGOS, NIGERIA

An airport employee at Murtala Muhammed International Airport was arrested for allegedly smuggling drugs. The suspect was caught airside by security, smuggling drugs hidden inside a carton within a vehicle. The suspect is suspected to be a driver employed by an aviation agency at the airport.

19 MARCH 2020: KAVAJË, ALBANIA

Brothers Klement and Eldi Cala were arrested in relation to the Rinas Airport heist worth €4.6 million (c. £4,050,000), which occurred in April last year. They were found in a rented flat. The arrest was part of a large operation conducted by national and local authorities.

11 MARCH 2020: DUBLIN, AIRPORT

Job Van den Broek, 30, was jailed for two months in relation to an incident on an Aer Lingus flight from Amsterdam to Dublin. Van den Broek was on his phone whilst crew members attempted to deliver flight safety information. Later in the flight, he lied that he was talking to his mother who had the coronavirus. When asked, he neither confirmed nor denied whether he had the virus himself, causing panic amongst the crew and passengers. Passengers were quarantined and underwent health checks when the flight landed.

11 MARCH 2020: MANCHESTER 2020: ENGLAND

Philip Mycock, 38, and his girlfriend Gemma Heap, 35, were charged with outraging public decency. The couple were accused of having drunken sex in their seats on a Thomas Cook flight from Manchester to Enfidha Airport, Tunisia, in July last year. They both denied the accusations.

10 MARCH 2020: NEWPORT NEWS, VIRGINIA

Kenneth R. Spirito, 47, the executive director of Williamsburg International Airport between 2009 and 2017, was found guilty of providing false information in order to secure loans. Spirito organised a loan of $5 million (c. £4,075,000) from TowneBank for a new airline, People Express Airline – the loan was guaranteed by the Peninsula Airport Commission (PAC). He also misapplied state funds to provide collateral for the loan. The airline stopped operating in 2014, which left the PAC liable to pay back the loan.

10 MARCH 2020: BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA

Gamal Elsaied Elboushi, 50, pleaded guilty to a weapons offence, stealing and assaulting a police officer at Brisbane Airport. Elboushi claimed to have a bomb and threatened to kill himself in front of his wife and children at the airport in February 2019 in an attempt to get custody of his children and to take them back to Egypt.

2 MARCH 2020: FRANKFURT, GERMANY

Flights were temporarily suspended at Frankfurt Airport due to a drone sighting. A pilot of an aircraft spotted the drone hovering over the southern part of the airport.

25 FEBRUARY 2020: WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND

A two-seater aircraft was targeted by a laser twice in the space of five minutes. The aircraft had a pilot and instructor onboard. Another small aircraft had been targeted within the airspace of Wellington Airport on 24 February.

15 FEBRUARY 2020: OTTAWA, CANADA

A Jazz de Havilland Dash 8-300 flying from Montreal to Ottawa was about to land when a laser flashed into the eyes of the pilot. Control of the aircraft was handed over to the captain; the pilot received minor injuries due to the incident.

15 FEBRUARY 2020: TORONTO, CANADA

An Ornge air ambulance pilot and paramedic suffered eye injuries due to a green laser being pointed at them. The air ambulance had dropped off a patient at the hospital for sick children and was returning to Billy Bishop Airport when it was attacked.

20 FEBRUARY 2020: MOROCCO

Reports emerged that Royal Air Maroc suspended two of their flight attendants after they took pictures with an adult film star, Valerie Kybad, on a flight in October last year. The picture went viral. Kybad posed provocatively in her underwear in the aircraft’s galley. Royal Air Maroc issued an apology to their customers.

18 MARCH 2020: MOLOKAI, HAWAII

Approximately 60 Molokai residents protested at Molakai Airport to stop visitors entering the island in order to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

16 MARCH 2020: DELHI, INDIA

Passengers from Paris and Frankfurt arrived at Indira Gandhi International Airport and protested the compulsory quarantine enforced because of the coronavirus.

11 MARCH 2020: JULIACA, PERU

Students from Universidad Andina Néstor Cáceres Velásquez de Juliaca protested at Inca Manco Cápac International Airport against property licenses. Protestors set a maintenance warehouse on fire but were repelled by police.

7 MARCH 2020: BRISTOL, ENGLAND

An Extinction Rebellion member climbed the 207ft Colston Tower in Bristol and placed two banners on it; one bearing their logo and another that stated, ‘Time is running out’. The group are against the plans to expand Bristol Airport.

1 MARCH 2020: PALMA, SPAIN

Hundreds of protestors gathered on Passeig des Born to demonstrate against the expansion of Palma Airport. Protestors highlighted the environmental implications of the proposed expansion.

23 MARCH 2020: OKSIBIL, PAPUA

A military transport aircraft was targeted by gunfire as it landed at Oksibil Airport. The aircraft’s fuselage was damaged.

20 MARCH 2020: BARCELONA, SPAIN

Two men drove their vehicle into the revolving doors at El Prat Airport. Reportedly, the men were shouting Islamist slogans as they drove the car into the airport. One man was allegedly intoxicated. €10,000 (c. £8,800) was found on them. The men were not armed and left the vehicle by the escalators. They ran up to the first floor of the building before they were arrested.

9 MARCH 2020: SANTIAGO, CHILE

Approximately seven men carried out an armed robbery in the cargo area of Santiago International Airport and stole a cash shipment worth over £11.5 million. The cash was due to be transported to banks within Chile. The men threatened the security guards at gun point to hand over the money and hit one security guard on the head, injuring him. The men travelled in two vehicles; one vehicle had the DHL logo painted on it. Police found the fake DHL van abandoned and partly burned; they suspect the gang was equipped with inside information.

4 MARCH 2020: CIUDAD JUÁREZ, MEXICO

A shootout ensued between gunmen and the Mexican National Guard at Abraham González International Airport. There were no direct casualties; however, an airport worker was wounded and a 62-year-old woman died of a heart attack. The police located three vehicles connected to the crime, with two containing rifles. It is suspected that the gunmen targeted Juan de Dios Valle Camacho, the Mayor of Villa Ahumada, who was due to board a flight to Culiacán. On 2 March the Mayor’s son, Juan Uriel Valle, had arrived in Juaréz and was shot and killed whilst waiting on a road outside the airport.

9 MARCH 2020: HANFORD, CALIFORNIA

A 17-year-old was found lying down on the runway at Hanford Airport. He stopped aircraft from landing and resisted arrest by biting a police officer.

5 MARCH 2020: HONOLULU, HAWAII

Khayla Alapai, a drug dealer, jumped out of a chartered flight from Honolulu that was due to fly to Kauai. She allegedly received a call warning her to get off the flight. She left behind two bags, which contained 335g of crystal meth. She later called the pilot to request a refund. Days later, she returned to the terminal in Honolulu Airport and was subsequently arrested.

2 FEBRUARY 2020: BHOPAL, INDIA

Yogesh Tripathi, 25, was arrested at Raja Bhoj airport. Tripathi ran onto the runway and damaged a parked helicopter and the nose of a helicopter that was taxiing by throwing stones at them.

22 MARCH 2020: ST. GEORGE, UTAH

Sharisse Lee Knight, 33, was drunk and abusive to TSA officers at St. George Airport. She attempted to pass through security without a ticket, claiming that she had a private jet. After she was denied entry, she left the airport and attempted to enter the runway through barbed wired fencing. She was unable to do so, and went back into the terminal, crawled through a luggage loading ramp, entered the runway and ran towards a parked aircraft. She was halted by airport officers and resisted arrest by kicking police officers.

15 MARCH 2020: MOSCOW, RUSSIA

A 37-year-old man became drunk and argued with a member of the border service at Domodedovo Airport. The man had removed his top and was half naked.

13 MARCH 2020: DABOLIM, INDIA

A 22-year-old man who works at a store at Dabolim Airport was arrested in the terminal after he showed pornographic material to a boy. The boy and his family were travelling from Goa to Mumbai.

2 MARCH 2020: RONALDSWAY, ISLE OF MAN

Robin Colin Maxwell, 53, broke two door entry panels at Ronaldsway Airport in order to gain access to his easyJet flight to Belfast after arriving late at the gate. He was refused boarding and arrested for the damage caused. He was later ordered to pay £50 in compensation and £125 in prosecution costs.

21 MARCH 2020: ARLINGTON, VIRGINIA

An unruly passenger on a Frontier Airlines flight from Denver to Reagan Washington National Airport attempted to open the emergency door during the flight. After the flight had landed, the passenger opened the door and slid down the emergency slide.

20 MARCH 2020: TOWNSVILLE, AUSTRALIA

A 42-year-old woman brawled with a fellow passenger on a Jetstar flight whilst the aircraft was grounded on the tarmac at Townsville Airport.

17 MARCH 2020: LONDON HEATHROW, ENGLAND

A drunk female passenger on a Malaysia Airlines flight from Kuala Lumpur to London Heathrow Airport was arrested after the flight because she attempted to storm the cockpit.

17 MARCH 2020: MUSCAT, OMAN

A Qatar Airways flight from Melbourne to Doha was forced to divert twice during its journey due to unruly passengers. The flight first diverted to Kuala Lumpur International Airport to remove the first unruly passenger and then diverted to Muscat to remove the second. The crew were replaced in Oman.

14 MARCH 2020: LONDON HEATHROW, ENGLAND

Actor Sean Bean, 60, and his wife Ashely Moore, 33, engaged in an altercation on a British Airways flight from Vancouver to London Heathrow. The pair, who were travelling in first class, were drunk when they began to argue. Moore then emptied her wine glass into the lap of her husband, who retaliated by throwing his glass at her.

26 MARCH 2020: CHICAGO, ILLINOIS

The car of a 24-year-old employee of Chicago O’Hare Airport was stolen at gunpoint as she parked it in the Swiss Cargo area of the airport. The thief got out of an SUV that had two other men in it.

21 MARCH 2020: NOUMEA, NEW CALEDONIA

La Tontouta International Airport was vandalised by a group of people demanding a more radical response to the COVID-19 crisis. The glass in the terminal and 40 parked cars were vandalised by a group of seven people. One individual was sentenced to 24 months, suspended for 18 months. The six other members, which include a minor, await sentencing.

20 MARCH 2020: NAIROBI, KENYA

German police investigated six million missing face masks that failed to arrive in Germany from a Kenyan Airport. It is suspected that either the masks had been stolen in transit or the supplier had not sent them.

14 MARCH 2020: HOBART, AUSTRALIA

Reports emerged of the theft of virtual fencing technology, worth around AU$3,000 (c. £1,460), which prevent animals from going on roads near Hobart Airport.

LEAD EDITORIAL

BY PHILIP BAUM

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

CORONAVIRUS: EXCUSE OR OPPORTUNITY? by Philip Baum

It’s hard to believe that just a few months ago we were assessing the shootdown of Ukraine International Airlines flight PS752 following its departure from Teheran, and the responsibility borne by the Iranian regime for the military error, which claimed 176 innocent lives. That was 8 January 2020. Only a week earlier, on New Year’s Eve, China had reported a cluster of cases of pneumonia in Wuhan, resulting in the identification of a novel coronavirus.…

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