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OTS reminds passengers vs bringing of ammo, arms inside NAIA terminals

Confiscated gun and ammo
The gun and live ammunition confiscated from two passengers in separate incidents at the NAIA terminal 4. (JERRY S. TAN)

THE Office of Transportation Security (OTS) at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) reminded all air passengers that bringing any kind of ammunition or firearms into the airport terminals is prohibited.

OTS Administrator Ma. O Ranada Aplasca reiterated the prohibition after two passengers were apprehended in two separate incidents recently.

It was learned that OTS personnel barred a 36-year-old woman bound for Bacolod when she was collared by the Philippine National Police Aviation Security Group (PNP-AVSEGROUP) after her baggage yielded a box containing fifty pieces of suspected live ammunition of caliber .38mm while undergoing the usual security screening at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 4.

OTS Security Screening Officer Razel Santonia was conducting x-ray screening of baggage after noticing an unusual image resembling a prohibited item.

The baggage was inspected in the presence of the passenger who was called upon together with law enforcement officers to witness the inspection, following the standard operating procedure.

The police on duty asked for corresponding documents, which the passenger failed to provide. Failing to do so, she was then arrested for violating Republic Act No. 10592.

While few pieces of ammunition which are brought without malicious intent will be simply confiscated and recorded, passengers who illegally transport and carry undocumented ammunition will be dealt with full extent of the law.

The other incident happened when OTS Security Screening Officers found an undocumented .22 caliber firearm concealed inside the underwear of a 40-year-old male passenger also at the NAIA Terminal 4.

The passenger, who was bound for Cagayan de Oro was undergoing the usual airport screening, when the alarm of the walkthrough metal detector repeatedly set off, prompting SSO Joseph Lee Caliwag and airport security screening checkpoint Supervisor Franklin Buscano to conduct a private screening.

After conducting the pat-down procedure, the airport officers found the firearm tucked inside the passenger’s underwear. It bore no serial number.

He was later turned over to the Philippine National Police Aviation Security Group (PNP-AVSEGROUP), which filed a case against the passenger for illegal possession of firearm in contravention with RA 10591, after he failed to provide appropriate documents.

Itchie G. Cabayan
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