Passenger’s money missing after GAIA search

What was supposed to be an exciting trip for one St James resident turned into a nightmare after she was allegedly robbed at the Grantley Adams International Airport (GAIA) yesterday. And she is pointing an accusatory finger at airline security officials.

Janelle Jordan, a bank worker who was on her way to Miami on American Airline flight AA2572, said she realized her money was missing when she boarded the flight after being frisked and searched at the departure gate.

She told Barbados TODAY the incident took place between 7:40 a.m. and 7:45 a.m. after she left a duty-free stop with her travel companion and was getting ready to board the flight.

“He went ahead of me but I noticed before we got there they were doing random searches. He went ahead and then they stopped me and said they have to perform a random search,” recalled Jordan of the officials at the gate.

“The person who stopped me . . .  asked me to step out the line for the search. I placed my handbag and my carry-on on the table. And another lady asked me to take off my jacket while she frisked me. And I recall the lady who took my bag and asked me to come over initially she backed me as she went through my items,” she said in giving a detailed description of the search by two officers, who were observed by a third.

Jordan said prior to the search she only opened her bag at the duty-free store where she made a purchase and was certain it was there when she left because she “checked to make sure that everything is where I left it”. She added that there was no other point during which the bag was out of her sight.

“After I had gone through the initial scan I would look at my stuff to make sure everything was in order,” she said.

Jordan said it was only after she boarded the aircraft that she checked and realized her purse was upside down.

“And I was like, ‘I didn’t leave this like this’, and when I pulled it out it was opened and all the cash I had in there was gone.”

Upon her arrival in Miami Jordan she conducted a thorough search of her purse, handbag and luggage to no avail. She said the money was to purchase items for her home during her 16-day trip.

“It has put a huge damper on that. So I can’t get the stuff I need to make myself comfortable in my own house. And the funds which I had was basically my bonus for the year . . . So basically I am here with the intention to shop for myself but now I am just here not doing much,” she said.

So far she has raised the issue with American Airlines and the GAIA office, both of which have acknowledged her complaint. She has also written to the police here; G4S, the company which provides security at the airport; immigration personnel at the airport and the head of the immigration department in Bridgetown.

“I am waiting to see what their responses will be,” Jordan said.

The distraught traveller told Barbados TODAY she decided to contact this newspaper because other people have since shared similar experiences with her and she felt the public ought to be aware of such incidents.

“I want to make sure that they [Barbadians] are aware of what happens and if anything to catch those involved. If I wasn’t with a companion I am not sure how I would be able to get to my destination in terms of paying taxi fare and doing other necessities. So I think it is something that should really be pressed because you are putting people at a disadvantage . . . I want the public to know what is happening at the airport,” she said.

 When contacted, GAIA’s Corporate Communication Specialist Keith Goddard told Barbados TODAY airport officials were made aware of the incident and it was being investigated by both the airport and the airline. (MM)

66 Responses to Passenger’s money missing after GAIA search

  1. Jody Chilton
    Jody Chilton December 31, 2015 at 5:14 am

    I have NEVER heard of “being frisked” at the boarding gate in my life. Why would she let agents frisk her and not require security people? And how do you not watch them go through your stuff especially when you know you’re carrying lots of cash? This story doesn’t add up. She of all people works for a bank and can’t keep track of money? Hmmm….

    Reply
    • Danielle Reid-Melillo
      Danielle Reid-Melillo December 31, 2015 at 6:05 am

      They rush on that early flight and they do frisk and check your bag simultaneously sometimes. I always check my stuff after

      Reply
    • Cherylann Bourne-Hayes
      Cherylann Bourne-Hayes December 31, 2015 at 6:15 am

      I have seen them do it Batbados, never anywhere else. It does not make any sense why they do it after going through it before you get to the gate.

      Reply
    • Danielle Reid-Melillo
      Danielle Reid-Melillo December 31, 2015 at 6:25 am

      Niel Harper it’s no more than $10 000 bajan cash!

      Reply
    • Danielle Reid-Melillo
      Danielle Reid-Melillo December 31, 2015 at 6:44 am

      Next time you travel in to barbados look at the customs form at the back. It states clearly how much you can leave or enter with. USD $1000 is nothing!

      Reply
    • Ashanda Coward
      Ashanda Coward December 31, 2015 at 6:47 am

      The lady never said an agent frisk her, she said officer smh

      Reply
    • Ashanda Coward
      Ashanda Coward December 31, 2015 at 6:48 am

      How would they know how much money you leave with? Mmmmm

      Reply
    • Danielle Reid-Melillo
      Danielle Reid-Melillo December 31, 2015 at 6:59 am

      So this rule is only for Barbadians? They can’t be serious!

      Reply
    • Tristan John
      Tristan John December 31, 2015 at 7:11 am

      Wow

      Reply
    • Danielle Reid-Melillo
      Danielle Reid-Melillo December 31, 2015 at 7:12 am

      The rule is silly and unfair! I know how hard it is to get money out from living overseas. Sad thing is that it’s your money you worked for. I had no idea about that rule for the airport! Niel Harper

      Reply
    • Jody Chilton
      Jody Chilton December 31, 2015 at 9:33 am

      I’ve flown hundred of times and never saw anyone searched at a gate. And if they tried, you have a right to demand a security person so it and watch.

      Reply
    • Jody Chilton
      Jody Chilton December 31, 2015 at 9:49 am

      Well, then your luck sucks.. And I live all over the world and come back to the states all the time and I’ll be damned if I’m going to get searched at the gate if I already passed security and clearance in the security and screening area. This would be a violation of my rights not to mention discrimination to be searched in public at the gate. And I really can’t answer your question about theft because if it’s on me, I’m clearly watching everything like a hawk. Can’t speak for what happens in my suitcase.

      Reply
    • Leroy January 1, 2016 at 1:56 pm

      There are random security checks after passengers leave the gate.

      Reply
  2. Sheldon Cox
    Sheldon Cox December 31, 2015 at 5:38 am

    I hope the cameras working

    Reply
  3. Wayne P Hoyte
    Wayne P Hoyte December 31, 2015 at 6:21 am

    a friend of mine recently complained some items were missing from her luggage and bag opened at GAIA.

    Reply
  4. Veronica A. Piggott
    Veronica A. Piggott December 31, 2015 at 6:40 am

    I glad it is come to light, they are stealing really bad and when I came in on the 27November, I realized that the pocket of my bag was opened and things missing and some out of my bag.

    Reply
    • Veronica A. Piggott
      Veronica A. Piggott December 31, 2015 at 11:51 am

      That means that all the other airports are doing the same because a friend of mine coming from Miami had the same thing.

      Reply
  5. Ashanda Coward
    Ashanda Coward December 31, 2015 at 6:41 am

    Once again you all play judge, jury, detective and mortician I hate when things like this happen you all start to speculate and don’t know the true facts only from an article stppzzz. Why must it sound suspicious? Do any of you know the facts? Were you there? If she lose her money who are you and I to say she didn’t? Why do you all keep doing this? Until the cameras are replayed we would know the true story until then stop making accusations and your own judgements about the situation. Stpzzzzz

    Reply
    • Ryan Williams
      Ryan Williams December 31, 2015 at 7:25 am

      The more apt question is if the cameras work and who is in charge of monitoring them. Suppose the footage was edited? How do we combat such a practice then?

      For arguments sake.

      Reply
    • Jody Chilton
      Jody Chilton December 31, 2015 at 9:27 am

      Not judging, just commenting on a comment threead. Isn’t that what it is for? No one judged this lady, so quit “judging” the commentors. Get a grip on your hostile attitude. Geez.

      Reply
    • Phyllis G Wallace
      Phyllis G Wallace December 31, 2015 at 9:34 am

      I agree Romeo. But as stated already, sometimes we just do what they tell us.

      Reply
  6. Tha Prototype
    Tha Prototype December 31, 2015 at 6:52 am

    Isn’t it possible that she misplaced the money in the duty free shop?

    Reply
  7. Tha Prototype
    Tha Prototype December 31, 2015 at 6:58 am

    I never keep all my cash in one thing. I would hate to believe she really had all her cash in one purse. When traveling you do not let anyone near your bags unless you are watching like a hawk. Too much craziness happens with luggage. There is no one on earth woo hasn’t heard of a traveling horror story. Things taken, things put in yOur bag the last goes on. To let someone back you and go through your bag in an airport to me seems like you’re asking for whatever comes your way. It’s just a carelessness that shouldn’t happen.

    Reply
    • Sharon Ellis
      Sharon Ellis December 31, 2015 at 7:29 am

      You are perfectly right.

      Reply
    • Tha Prototype
      Tha Prototype December 31, 2015 at 9:57 am

      Common knowledge Ingrid King. I didn’t say she shouldn’t adhere to the security officers. But you don’t get your bags searched and you aren’t there when they are going through them. If she chose to remain mute when security took her bag, back her knowing all her cash was in it and allowed it then that’s on her. They are ways around circumstances that include protocols. And of course one would not be an arrogant asshole to security. One would politely ask to watch as their bags are being searched. I’ve been traveling all my life. I’ve never had security search me without me being present or watching them as they take my things from my bag. It’s really a common sense thing.

      Reply
    • Tha Prototype
      Tha Prototype December 31, 2015 at 9:58 am

      I keep my money separated for the mere fact that if I lose any I’m not losing all. Again common sense.

      Reply
    • Candice Elenor
      Candice Elenor December 31, 2015 at 10:50 am

      Now i like what you said..truly….you are correct… there is no way anybody gine back me ..and i like a bag with compartments not no all in one …cos i know where my wallet is …and this is why i travel with Debit cards..She works in a bank. .She should know better…as a constant flyer especially coming home to Bim…majority of my money is on cards. .i hardly travel with all cash . But thats going into Barbados … Bim accepts all our cards ..but i guess her money will be in cash cos her kind of cards wont work in the states..but in any case if she is just travelling with cash…she should of kept close watch to her stuff ..because the same way some one could of take her money …they could of slipped some thing on her as well… backing is a serious thing ..they couldnt of done that me …once i aint making no big scene. .i want to find out what is going on with my purse..no trouble..i just want to know why Security backing me for going thru my belongings

      Reply
  8. Winnie Meade
    Winnie Meade December 31, 2015 at 7:26 am

    My hosband nephew come back from uk he have all is bag out side he was si glad to see is wife n child wen he look down one bag gone

    Reply
  9. Rawle Spooner
    Rawle Spooner December 31, 2015 at 7:27 am

    This does not surprise me at all i would be hunting that f- -king person down on arrival back in Bim nothing will happen because she left and notice it after,expect a lot more of this to happen.By the way once she turn her back on me i would have call her ya know what right there and then..

    Reply
  10. Kay Critchlow
    Kay Critchlow December 31, 2015 at 8:01 am

    Simple fact that thieves are everywhere all nations from the high up in government to the homeless on the streets. It is partly our responsibility to watch our property but it’s also the responsibility of the airports to let us know who can and can’t frisk us and to let us all know our rights which ever country we might be arriving or leaving. I don’t think anyone at an airport should be allowed to go through your stuff unless you are taken to an area that is designated for such search and cameras in place.

    Reply
  11. Pee Parris
    Pee Parris December 31, 2015 at 8:04 am

    I have heard of things being taken from passengers’ luggage there, so I don’t think it’s impossible, but I thought that was only done to incoming passengers, I didn’t know they’re hitting on departing passengers as well.

    Reply
    • Phyllis G Wallace
      Phyllis G Wallace December 31, 2015 at 9:38 am

      Pee , when do they have time to get incoming passengers? I’m curious , as we had binoculars Stolen many years ago.

      Reply
  12. Vernon Chandler December 31, 2015 at 8:15 am

    @Judy. Yes they sometimes do random ‘frisking’ at the boarding gate. It happened to me last year. But I agree with u that the story seem a little fishy. Besides it is the traveler’s responsibility to keep track of their possessions at all times when they are in the airports. Lets say that when she landed in Miami the Customs there found a kilo of cocaine in her purse. Could she blame the same officials who searched her in Barbados & say that they put it there?

    Reply
  13. Peachesnaddy Brown
    Peachesnaddy Brown December 31, 2015 at 8:16 am

    Ole tief Dem let Dem give u back u money bunch a criminals

    Reply
  14. Sue Donym December 31, 2015 at 10:05 am

    Is it really being suggested that if you blink too long, you deserve to be a victim of crime? One is usually relying on security officers to be honest.

    She’s following up with the authorities – not the actions of a careless, absent-minded person.

    Reply
  15. Jack de ripper December 31, 2015 at 10:13 am

    They do frisk and at one time their random search got me everytime…however they would have to be pickpockets because my money does not leave my pocket. Granted it might be different for women depending on what they’re wearing at the time. Pay attention. If you saw it after the duty free shop the why are you checking luggage when you get to miami….you aren’t sure.

    Reply
    • Sue Donym December 31, 2015 at 11:31 am

      Maybe she checked because she was holding on to the slim chance that the money had fallen into the carry-on. Remember she said the purse was open and upside down as both were subject to search.

      Reply
  16. Wendy Stewart
    Wendy Stewart December 31, 2015 at 10:13 am

    So sad and unfortunate

    Reply
  17. Jamar Jones
    Jamar Jones December 31, 2015 at 10:56 am

    Lol

    Reply
  18. Candice Elenor
    Candice Elenor December 31, 2015 at 11:01 am

    I really got to credit our American Security here in at JFK…none of this would never happen..nobody is backing anybody…they check your bag in front of you …if need too but the machine scans they can see everything. .. even in london ..they do a very careful check in front of you … Barbados i am abit suprised cos i have been coming home regularly and nothing like that..just that they can be alot better with their manners..they are very unmannerly and nasty at that Airport..and treat certain folks lolllll..like dogs..i am very turn off at the behavoir of the Folks in customs there..i think its the worst part of visiting Barbados. .a very nasty bunch with some terrible attitudes and do not know how to treat people lollll

    Reply
  19. BaJan boy December 31, 2015 at 11:11 am

    There is nothing fishy about her story. The security people simply found an opportunity to steal her money and they did. Sure they act as accomplices and split the money. What should be done is that the security checks should all be recorded to avoid these incidents or at least catch the thieves.

    Reply
  20. BaJan boy December 31, 2015 at 11:13 am

    They even search your luggage and steal from the send on luggage when it’s at the Tarmac waiting to be loaded.better serveillence is needed at our airport.

    Reply
  21. BaJan boy December 31, 2015 at 11:14 am

    They even search your luggage and steal from the send on luggage when it’s at the Tarmac waiting to be loaded.better serveillence is needed at our airport.in all of the areas where passengers property can be stolen.

    Reply
  22. Queenie ShaSha
    Queenie ShaSha December 31, 2015 at 11:30 am

    Tingz come outtttt….long time they were doing that ish

    Reply
  23. Veroniva Boyce
    Veroniva Boyce December 31, 2015 at 12:22 pm

    Times are hard in Barbados at the moment, Taxi Drivers Robbing you left right and centre and the airport got some really dishonest staff. Shameful disgusting behaviour. It need to STOP. As usual Freundel fast asleep.

    Reply
  24. Veroniva Boyce
    Veroniva Boyce December 31, 2015 at 12:22 pm
    Reply
  25. Alison Harewood
    Alison Harewood December 31, 2015 at 12:23 pm

    If she realized that the purse was empty before the plane departed Barbados, then she should have spoken to one of the flight attendants. American Airlines would have to be delayed, because I wasn’t leaving Barbados without my money and GAIA’s security would have had to search each other or something. If I kew I had it when I left the Duty Free shop, then it went missing after, so somebody will have to give me answers. I would NOT have waited until I got to Miami. Just my opinion.

    Reply
    • Blessing Greenidge
      Blessing Greenidge December 31, 2015 at 1:39 pm

      Very valid opinion. That us exactly what she should the done. It may be difficult for her to prove her case coz she waited until she reached Miami to do something. that plane should have never left the tarmac.

      Reply
  26. Alphonso Elijah
    Alphonso Elijah December 31, 2015 at 1:10 pm

    Some of their hands lite like a hair.

    Reply
  27. Ann Semple
    Ann Semple December 31, 2015 at 1:18 pm

    that happened to my mother years ago when my mother put her bag to get check and she turn to close her suit case her bag with all her money was gone and she called out that some body stole her bag and we get it back safe so some ppl do foolishness at the air port !

    Reply
  28. Ann Semple
    Ann Semple December 31, 2015 at 1:20 pm

    When ppl get the suitcase it cut open I experience that

    Reply
  29. Kent Bridges December 31, 2015 at 11:18 pm

    duh gine steal from the wrong person one of the days.

    Reply
  30. Brenda January 2, 2016 at 4:29 pm

    I had a Lil cuz leave on the early jet blue he had a large envelope in his case when he check in and went he reach new York it was missing. But the joke was on the person that took it it was not cash it was a dress

    Reply

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