Caught on Video: Baggage Handler Stealing Luggage

A passenger on a LAN flight from Pucallpa took video out the window of his Airbus A320 while waiting to deplane in Lima, Peru.

Baggage handlers were going through luggage before taking them to baggage claim. One looks around to see if anyone was watching (and didn’t do a very good job of that, apparently) and then reaches into a passenger’s bag and takes something out. He hands it to another baggage handler.

LAN says the contract baggage handlers will have charges pressed against them. (And here you thought it was just the TSA that stole from luggage!)

It’s hardly the first time we’ve seen baggage handlers stealing from luggage. This is worse, even, than when airport workers play baggage toss with your luggage.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

More articles by Gary Leff »


  1. Hmmm. Last year, while flying LAN within Peru, my wife had a pair of shoes taken from her checked baggage. They weren’t even expensive shoes. It seemed kind of bizarre at the time. They were in a bag inside her luggage, so maybe the thief didn’t know exactly what was being stolen.

    Given the small loss involved, I wasn’t going to pursue it. But my wife insisted. So we emailed LAN. They asked for some details and, to my surprise, eventually sent her a check for the shoes.

  2. About ten years ago, I flew to Guatemala City from LA. I forget which airline. We landed and they kept us on the plane while we watched the guys unload the baggage into the carts. Then , security guards frisked the unloaders as we watched. I felt sure it was intentional for everyone on the plane to see. I remember thinking “I am not in the USA any more.”

  3. It’s quite common in Indian airports especially at international arrivals. They usually look for watches/gadgets and some smaller items and easily pull out. As expected, airlines give a damn about complaints, another major problem because of over-population.
    That’s why, we started using TSA locks and do not keep any valuables inside checked bags.

  4. You would actually be shocked at some of the complex schemes that baggage handlers throughout the world put together to steal from luggage. The most complex ones (that actually led to prosecution, conviction and imprisonment) that I have dealt with were in the UK and were effectively organised crime syndicates. This is amateur league.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *