New York’s JFK airport suffered an epic breach of security this week, after a man with no ticket or ID was able to board a flight—without passing through security screening.
The NY Post reports that Marcelino Aponte, a ramp worker at JFK airport, was booked on a Delta flight from New York to Orlando. However, Aponte turned up at the airport without his boarding pass and without a proper ID, so the TSA turned him away at security.
Aponte then allegedly used his JFK work ID to access the plane through the back way—bypassing screening. A security agent and TSA agent saw Aponte making his way to the plane, but somehow managed to lose track of him on the security monitors—and they reportedly waited 45 minutes after the security breach to alert Port Authority cops.
By that time, it was too late for anyone to stop Aponte, and the flight took off (with Aponte aboard, carrying hand luggage that was never screened).
The flight landed in Orlando without incident, and Aponte was detained upon arrival. He will be charged in New York on misdemeanor counts, and his airport ID will be revoked.
The NY Post spoke with a law enforcement official about the incident, who stated, “Here’s an airport worker who took advantage of his knowledge and his ability to use it to subvert airport security, so he could thwart screening for himself and the baggage he was carrying.”
It’s unclear why Aponte dodged security—it seems like he would have been able to obtain a boarding pass (since he had a reservation), and it is possible to fly without ID on a domestic flight in certain cases. It’s also unclear why the flight was allowed to continue on to Orlando after authorities realized that Aponte was on the plane.
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