TSA agents are there to keep the skies safe. but we uncovered an afterhours party where TSA agents were allegedly caught on tape using drugs. It comes as LAX is beefing up security in the wake of the Chritsmas bombing attempt.
On a day the mayor was touting security ... "Here at LAX we're ahead of the curve on security measures."
And the local head of TSA acknowledged the burden of keeping travelers safe ... "The TSA has a huge mission to protect America's transportation network."
We expose TSA Agents -- busted for drugs! In a party caught on tape. One the agency doesn't want to talk about.
I asked an official, "Does this tape trouble you." They replied, "I told you I cannot comment on that incident."
The investigation began late last year when a TSA Agent was arrested for allegedly counterfeiting parking passes here at the employee parking lot. In his house, police found a videotape. On it was an afterhours party where other TSA agents were allegedly using drugs.
These are the same people in charge of screening our bags. Making sure travelers are safe. But perhaps high on drugs.
TSA sources say the tape was turned over to investigators. Each employee identifired was ordered to take a drug test. TSA won't say how many, but each one who failed was fired.
Larry Fetters, the Federal Security Director at LAX says, "We don't tolerate drugs. We don't tolerate narcotics." He wouldn't talk specifics, but said the agency has random drug testing, and claims the employees would have been caught even without the video.
He said, "It's just as likely they would have been tested coming to work."
I asked, "How can you say that?"
And he replied, "How can I say that? As a former deputy LAPD chief for 31 years, I can tell you that drugs and alcohol abuse are a problem in our society."
But these people would have been found absent this videotape?
"Eventually" he said.
But how long is eventually?
"Well, when are we going to find someone that works for your corporation?"
I told him my corporation isn't at the forefront of security as his agency is.
"Look, you're right."
None of the employees was charged with any crimes. Even the TSA agent caught counterfeiting parking passes wasn't prosecuted because no one he sold to would come forward.
But the incident was kept under wraps. Even from the mayor.
Said Villaraigosa, "This is the first I've heard about it."
I asked if the alleged drug use troubled him. "I think it would trouble everyone."
Everyone of the traveling public....who depend on TSA agents, baggage screeners, to keep us safe.