Federal authorities are searching for a flight attendant they say bolted from a security screening at Los Angeles International Airport, leaving behind about 70 pounds of cocaine stashed in her luggage—and her Gucci heels. TSA officers stopped the woman at random Friday, and she remained at large Monday, a DEA spokesman says.The flight attendant was sent to a secondary screening area, but she quickly dropped her bag, ditched her heels, and fled barefoot down an upward-moving escalator, says Marshall McClain, president of the union representing LAX airport police officers. Police were called to investigate an unattended bag and later uncovered 69 pounds of cocaine inside, McClain says.
McClain expressed concern that officers were alerted about the unattended bag but not a suspicious person running through the airport. He says the case also shows why all flight attendants and other airport employees need to be screened. "With her bringing this amount of narcotics in the airport, chances are this wasn't her first time through," he tells the AP. "We're hoping this is a wake-up call to airport management as well as federal legislators." A law enforcement source tells the Guardian that the flight attendant has been identified, though it's not clear what airline she worked for. (This smuggler was given away by fresh operation scars.)