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PIA steward arrested in UK for trying to smuggle mobile phones

PIA-Plane

Lahore: The Border Force Heathrow had included PIA in the yellow category (warning to ban it) because its crew are allegedly involved in carrying restricted items or goods in excess of their (duty-free) personal allowances. Image Courtesy Twitter.
A Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) flight steward was arrested at the UK’s Heathrow airport for trying to smuggle mobile phones out of the country, yet another scandal involving the state-run airlines staff.

PIA spokesman Aamir Memon told PTI that flight steward Khurrum Shehzad was caught red-handed at the Heathrow airport while trying to smuggle mobile phones in his luggage.

He was boarding the PIA flight PK 786 for Islamabad a couple of days ago.
“We have terminated the steward. PIA has zero tolerance for corruption and illegal activities,” the spokesman said, adding it was an act of individual and those employees involved in corruption would not be spared.

“We had terminated some crew members earlier on smuggling and corruption,” he said.
Recently, the PIA’s five employees, including two airhostesses, were detained in London for trying to smuggle 30,000 pounds and a large quantity of smartphones.

The Border Force Heathrow had included PIA in the yellow category (warning to ban it) because its crew are allegedly involved in carrying restricted items or goods in excess of their (duty-free) personal allowances.

In a letter to the PIA management, the Heathrow authorities said: “A number of your employees, when operating as crew, have been identified as failing to comply with the Border Force policy and/or UK law.

“Over recent months there have been a number of occasions when ineligible persons have attempted to use the Heathrow Crew Clearance facility. As a result of our checks they have been identified attempting to use it.

Under the law, all operating crew members travelling from outside the European Union are required to make a customs declaration.

“As a law-enforcement agency, Border Force will prosecute those persons committing serious offences to the fullest extent of the law,” the letter said.

PTI