Air France Hostess Arrested After Wave of Business-Class Thefts

Bloomberg | Jul 20, 2010

French police arrested an Air France flight attendant after a series of thefts of cash, jewelry and credit cards from sleeping business-class passengers. The arrested woman, who hasn’t been publically identified, was questioned and released under court supervision on July 17, said a spokeswoman for the prosecutor in the northern Paris suburb of Bobigny, who declined to be named, citing department policy. The arrest caps a six-month investigation opened after five passengers on a Tokyo-Paris flight reported that a total of 4,000 euros ($5,160) had been stolen from their hand luggage.

Thefts have been reported in business-class sections of 142 Air France flights this year, according to French newspaper Le Figaro, which first reported the arrest. The suspect faces charges related to 26 separate incidents. French border police used staff rosters and passenger lists to identify the suspect, Figaro said. Officers arrested her on the tarmac of Paris Charles de Gaulle airport on July 16, after she arrived on a flight from Tokyo.  

Police searching the flight attendant’s home and a bank deposit box in her name recovered jewelry, checks and credit card numbers, Le Figaro said. Air France had no comment on the arrest, company spokesman Nicolas Petteau said by telephone. Under international aviation rules, the airline accepts liability for baggage only when placed in the hold.



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