Hong Kong: Police and airlines join forces to tackle soaring rate of thefts from overhead lockers.

Hong Kong Police and various airlines have joined forces to combat the soaring number of in-flight thefts on Hong Kong-bound planes. By the end of October there had been 67 reports of thefts aboard flights into Hong Kong, with HK$4.83 million stolen. That compares with 48 cases and losses of HK$2.61 million in the whole of 2014. Chief Inspector Kelvin Ip Chun-wing of the airport district’s crime unit said at least one-third of the cases were discovered by flight attendants.

“The thieves change modus operandi all the time,” said Ip.

“Stewardesses play an important role. Many of the cases were caught by attentive stewardesses before the mile-high criminals succeeded.”

Ip said that in the absence of cameras on board, cabin crew were vital witnesses in bringing the gangs to justice. The force would strengthen intelligence exchange with airlines and hold more crime prevention seminars with air hostesses. Ip said most offenders were from Southeast Asia and they struck when the cabin lights were dimmed after meal time.

He appealed to travellers to look after their property and not put cash inside the luggage cabin.

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Source: South China Morning Post.

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