Friday, February 22, 2008

Confiscated: One hot wallet!

We've all heard the expression about money burning a hole in one's pocket, but this is over the top. Last month a screener at an airport security checkpoint confiscated a flaming wallet from a passenger. No joke! That's it in the photo at right.

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) website has a section where interesting stories about TSA employees are posted. That's where I found this tale about the Transportation Security Officer (TSO) who intercepted the flaming wallet.

As the TSA explains, Zigmund Piech, the Lead TSO at Burlington (VT) International Airport "observed a passenger with unusual bulges in his back pockets." During a pat-down it was discovered that the passenger was carrying two packs of playing cards and a wallet in his pockets.
Piech noticed a gasoline odor coming from the items, as did Supervisory TSO Cindy Bevins, who put the items through the X-ray. The wallet produced an unusual image and as they were examining it, burst into flames.
It turns out that the owner of the wallet claimed to be a magician, and said he uses the wallet in his act. Well, that magician is going to have to change his act, because law enforcement made the wallet disappear. That is, they confiscated it. (No surprise there!)

After the magician was relieved of the tools of his trade, he was allowed to board his flight and continue his journey. In that sense he was more fortunate than the man caught at LAX last year with a magnet in his rectum. Last I heard, that guy was facing deportation.

[Photo Source]