This incident could happen to anyone that uses air travel.
Stolen Carry- On Bag During Security Check
by Hermann Paul Schlander
This lawsuit decided by the 9th Circuit Court Federal Court of Appeals is as the result of loss of jewelry by the plaintiff, appellant while she was undergoing airport security screening. Ester Dazo was scheduled to take a flight from San Jose, California to Toronto, Canada, via a stop in Saint Louis, Missouri. She placed her carry-on bag, containing approximately $100,000 in jewelry on the conveyor and then passed through the security screening procedure conducted by Globe Airport Security Service, which provided service for Trans World, Continental and American West. When Dazo was through with the screening and went to pick up her luggage, it was gone.
Dazo filed a lawsuit against Globe and the three airlines in the 9th Circuit Federal District Court that dismissed her suit. The district court held that the loss was subject to the Warsaw Convention, since it was an international flight was involved. which limited liability of Globe, if any, to about $5,000 francs. This decision was upheld on the original appeal to the Court of Appeals. The appeal was reconsidered and the Appeals Court reversed and remanded the decisions. This court held " Neither Globe not the air carriers that did not provide Dazo's international carriage should be entitled to the Warsaw Convention limitation of liability. The district court's dismissal of Dazo's claim as preempted by the Warsaw Convention, is therefore reversed and case remanded for further proceedings."
During my years in the insurance business I have handled lots of jewelry claims but never one like this. However, it is common knowledge that Laptop computers are targets of thieves stealing the computers from the X-ray machine conveyor belt while the owner is still being screened. The case is Ester Dazo, vs. Globe Airport Security. Etal, as No.00-15058 D.C. No. CV-99-20548-JW. It should not be too long before it is published by West Publishing Co. There is a 16 page decision via Findlaw-9th Circuit and Adobe Reader on the Internet
The writer is not a lawyer and not giving legal advise. This article is for educational purposes. Keep your eye what goes through the screening process.
Gee.. all that legaleze to say WATCH YOUR STUFF <G>
There are in fact organized theft rings and pickpockets likely working most major airports in the world, targeting not just laptops, etc, but things as simple as purses.
They also work shopping malls, parking lots and busy streets.
So the warning to WATCH YOUR STUFF holds true pretty much ANYWHERE you go.
And brings to mind the OLD joke....
My wife had her credit card stolen, but I didn't report it because the theif was spending less than she did.
Just this past week I was in 4 different airports and was trying to keep an eye on our belongings. In every case the security check was just taking TOO LONG & there would have been plenty of time for someone to take someone else's belongings. In one particular case my husband's wallet was lying open in a bin on the other end, as was my purse and other items in a carryon. The man in front of us just couldn't seem to get all of his pockets emptied in a timely manner. A good ploy for a buddy on the other side! Too many people around that area w/too much going on. Could easily happen.
What is your question for the staff Hanna? I am really curious as to why you are always posting court decisions for things that happend awhile ago if you are not trying to give some sort of legal advice, and what that is I don't really know except as Kuki said, keep your eyes open when traveling.
Community Staff Leader
I guess I'm a little late to get into this thread, but IMHO, the best way to try to protect yourself against this sort of thing if you're traveling with someone else is for one of you to hang on to all the bags until the other is through the security screening... then your spouse/friend is there to get the bags on the other side while you go through. That way you won't have to worry about getting caught with your bags on one side and you on the other. If you're traveling alone the best thing to do is wait until the person in front of you is totally through the scanner before putting your bags down. Then (hopefully) you'll be able to walk right through and meet your bags on the other side.
That's what we do when Queeg and I travel together.
Your comment made me think about the single traveller, though. Might be an idea to ask the person in front of you in line if he/she would mind standing at the end of the conveyor until YOUR stuff comes through?
I also try to wait to put my things on the conveyor belt until the person ahead of me is through the scanner. This has always worked out well until my recent trip from K.C. I was traveling alone, place my things on the belt and walk through the scanner. . However, the buzzer went off. So while my things were waiting for me at the end of the conveyor belt, I was being wanded, patted down, asked to take my shoes off etc. No way was I able to watch my things. Very nervewracking to say the least but especially not being able to watch my purse. What does a person do when you're traveling alone and this happens?