Flight 253 Hero Pockets $18K for Photos
Jasper Schuringa is making bank off two pix...sort of
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 28, 2009 8:19 AM CST

(Newser) – Jasper Schuringa, who burned his hands while taking down Flight 253's would-be terrorist, may be the hero of the hour—but he’s not above profiting from said heroism, hitting up media outlets for serious cash for pix of the bomber and himself, writes Foster Kamer for Gawker. With the help of an Israeli handler, Schuringa raked in at least $18,000—ostensibly for two grainy cell phone photos he took, but actually for the interviews that came along with those photos for CNN and the New York Post.

News outlets skirt accusations of TMZ-style “checkbook journalism” by paying a licensing fee—in this case, a fee for the print or TV rights to Schuringa’s photos—which they forked over “because the only way to get interviews with this guy was to pay him,” Kamer writes. Schuringa’s dealmaker, the friend he was on his way to visit in Miami, was “quite upfront” about the money that changed hands, one reporter tells Gawker. For more, click here.