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Two TSA screeners charged with stealing nearly $40,000

Port Authority police busted two TSA employees for allegedly stealing tens of thousands of dollars from checked baggage at JFK.
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Port Authority police busted two Transportation Safety Administration employees for allegedly stealing tens of thousands of dollars from checked baggage at John F. Kennedy Airport, reports.

Comar Persad, 36, and Davon Webb, 30, are expected to each face three felony charges — grand larceny, conspiracy and possession of stolen property — and one misdemeanor charge of official misconduct, authorities said. Persad and Webb have also admitted to other thefts of up to $160,000, the New York Daily News reported.

Police say $39,980 has been recovered in connection with the investigation.

The TSA hired Webb, who lives in the Bronx, in 2004. Persad, a Queens resident, has worked for the agency for nearly a decade.

The Queens district attorney did not know if the two suspects had lawyers. They could not immediately be reached.

The TSA condemned the behavior of the accused thieves and said in a statement that the agency has a "zero tolerance policy" for theft in the workplace.

"The disgraceful actions of a few should not reflect negatively on the approximately 50,000 TSA officers across the country who work each day to keep the traveling public safe," the TSA statement said.

The arrests of the two men are the result of an investigation initiated by the TSA in partnership with Port Authority police after another TSA employee at JFK reported the thefts to agency management, according to a TSA official familiar with the case.

Nationwide, the agency has fired 12 TSA officers for theft from the security checkpoint or from checked baggage, the official said.

The TSA official also noted the agency is currently in the process of terminating both Webb and Persad.

"The agency is working closely with law enforcement authorities to ensure the individuals responsible are prosecuted and we will move swiftly and decisively to end the federal careers of any employee who engages in illegal activity on the job," the TSA statement continued.