LAX Informative - Stolen items from missing bag

Review by rakeshk on 2010-03-29
My camera and other items were stolen from my bag which did not arrive in San Diego from LAX. Having arrived from an international flight and clearing customs, I re-checked the bag and handed it to the United airlines representative Filed a missing bag report with UA in San Diego. Good news is that the bag was found in the Lufthansa lost and found department, minus the baggage check tags. They contacted me and arranged for delivery to me the following day. Bad news is that when I opened the bag it was missing, among other items, my digital camera. I have filed a report with UA, and am expecting to be compensated. However, having now read reports online about baggage theft at LAX it appears to me that this is another example of a systematic way some thieves are operating.

So, I called the LAX police but got a nonchalant response. The officer said that there is nothing they can do, and that if I can get compensated by the airline that's the best I can expect.
Comments:15 Replies - Latest reply on 2010-03-31
Posted by Pepper on 2010-03-29:
keep in mind that the people responsible for taking your items may have very well have been the one of the TSA agents. It's as likely perhaps as an airline employee, perhaps even more likely since they do have to open the luggage to scan for chemicals that indicate explosives.

Although this will not help you get your items back (sorry) this is perhaps an opportunity to remind people that there's two really good places to pack expensive electronics.

The first is in your carry-on luggage. It's hard to steal something when the owner is in control of the item.

The other option is to consider using a seabag. Sure it's ugly, & you have to pack it extra carefully to make sure the items don't break. However, it's much harder to dig something out of a seabag than it is to lift it from a regular suitcase.

Sometimes the best answer is to in fact make your items harder to access.

I do hope however that you get a professional answer on your items.
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2010-03-29:
What's a seabag, I've never heard of one before.
As for your belongings, I'm sorry that happened to you. All of their guidelines aside, a person has the right to pack an item in their luggage and expect it to be there, intact when they land. Not pocketed by some sticky fingered airport employee or government agent that is supposed to be working in their best interest.
Posted by Pepper on 2010-03-29:
A seabag is a giant green bag issued to sailors. You're suppose to be able to fit the entire list of minimum uniform items into one of them. Doing so requires some pretty creative folding but the bag really does hold a lot. I once had a good 50 pounds of stuff in it. And you can wear it on your back too.

I'll post a link to a pic :)

The bag next to the sailor in the statue is a seabag.

another example would be http://www.flickr.com/photos/30501766@N00/2044935366/
lots of seabags!
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2010-03-29:
Interesting, okay :)
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-03-29:
The moment I found out I would never again be allowed to lock my suitcase because security people can go through it to check it was the day I kept all electronics, jewelry and money on my person for a flight. I also pack things in clear plastic bags so it's easier, and neater, for them to check.
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2010-03-29:
Yes, because if I know security officials, they would likely just dump everything back in in one huge pile. But that's okay though, who cares if your aftershave leaks all over your clothing?
Posted by Pepper on 2010-03-29:
i really doubt they dump entire seabags out
i mean yeah they could but then it'd be a pain in the behind to get everything back in. i've personally found my seabags to be pretty much undisturbed with one exception

and if you're gonna steal it'd be easier to steal from an easier mark.

but indeed it's a good idea to be careful about what you pack inside. but not because of your scenario but because those bags may get thrown. which is where my "one exception" comes into play. i packed a jar of honey. at least the mess was a nice smelling mess, but it was still... a mess.
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-03-29:
True that, IAC. I don't like the thought of people touching my undergarments. The thought of anyone but Viggo Mortensen touching my undies gives me the creeps. ;)
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2010-03-29:
I have a considerable amount of contempt for these so called 'customs/security' personnel. I have always found them (at least in Canada) to be unbelievably rude and unprofessional. I wouldn't trust them not to steal from me, and I certainly don't trust them with my safety.
Yet another set of government programs designed to protect us but in the end only winds up being an additional source of aggravation.
Posted by Pepper on 2010-03-29:
So I guess I should now mention that Viggo really liked one of my old t-shirts?

(of course his breath also smells like cat food) *g*
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-03-29:
PE.....I worked a small airport for awhile. This airport did not have the CTX machines that x-ray the checked bags. The TSA had 3 types of searches. One of them being a full search where they had to empty the entire contents of the bag. This airport was also near an army base so put 2 and 2 together. Many, many a time, seabags were completely emptied and re-packed.
Posted by Alain on 2010-03-29:
Good information here.
Posted by Pepper on 2010-03-29:
o interesting.
thanks. i didn't know that

hmmm maybe my idea isn't so great after all. :-p
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-03-29:
> You've met Viggo? Honey, I'm actually fond of cat breath. He's a fine looking 50 year old. Sorry. Off topic. Bad airport people. Bags. Keep undies in plastic. There. Back on topic.
Posted by Pepper on 2010-03-31:
yes sherdy. Viggo lived with me for a few years.

I have a photo of him from my old apartment:


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