Airport Security Officer Admits Stealing From Travelers

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NEWARK – A Woodbridge man who worked as a lead transportation security officer employed by the Transportation Security Administration at Newark Liberty International Airport admitted Thursday that he and his supervisor regularly stole from travelers during security screenings, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced.

Al Raimi, 29, pleaded guilty before United States District Judge Jose L. Linares to an charge of theft by a government officer. He faces a maximum potential penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine when sentenced on June 6.

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From October 2009 to Sept. 8, 2010, Raimi was a lead transportation security officer at the B-3 security checkpoint for Terminal B at Newark Airport. During that time, Raimi stole between $10,000 and $30,000 in cash from travelers, according to documents filed in this case and statements made in court.

Raimi would then “kick up” a portion of the money he stole to Michael Arato – his immediate supervisor at the checkpoint. In exchange, Arato allowed Raimi to continue stealing. Arato pleaded guilty earlier this month to accepting bribes and kickbacks, admitting that he did so in exchange for not reporting the thefts to their superiors or other authorities. Arato also admitted that he regularly stole from passengers traveling through the checkpoint.


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