Port Authority NJ police arrested a Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officer accused of stealing a high-priced watch from a passenger at Newark Liberty International Airport.
According to law enforcement, the 39-year-old suspect unlawfully removed a watch from a passenger’s bag while the suspect worked as a TSA agent. When the bag passed through a security screening at the Newark airport, multiple witnesses reportedly observed the suspect as he took a watch from the bag.
Port Authority NJ police officers later detained and then searched the suspect. During the search, police reportedly found an expensive watch in the pants pocket of the suspect’s TSA uniform. The watch, a Michele Deco brand model, is said to have a value of roughly $1,000.
The suspect, who is from Woodland Park, NJ, was placed under arrest at the Newark NJ airport and charged with theft of movable property.
If the suspect is eventually convicted of theft, he could face severe criminal penalties. As set forth by N.J.S.A. 2C:20-3, a person who unlawfully takes someone else’s property valued at more than $500 can be charged with a third degree criminal offense. A conviction on third degree theft of movable property charges could result in a sentence of 3-5 years in New Jersey State Prison.
After being arrested and processed, the suspect secured his release from police custody on his own recognizance. He will be required to make an appearance in an Elizabeth NJ court to answer the criminal charges.
For additional information about this case, view the NJ.com article, “Newark TSA Agent Caught Swiping $1K Watch from Passenger’s Bag, Cops Say.”