TSA Employee Arrested as Stealing More than 100 Items Out of Luggage and Trying to Sell Them on EBay

Pythias Brown
As a screener at Newark Liberty International Airport, Pythias Brown let nothing get past him — literally. He is accused of stealing over 100 valuable items like 66 cameras while working for the Transportation Security Administration. They really should have seen at least the missing cameras coming. The original Pythias (shown on the left) sat on a tripod, spoke in gibberish, and derived her name from pythein (πύθειν, “to rot”).

Remarkably, Brown was not caught until he made the mistake of stealing a $47,900 camera from an HBO crew and a camcorder from a CNN employee. He later tried to sell some of the items on EBay.

His haul included 66 cameras, 31 laptop computers, 20 cell phones, 17 sets of electronic games, 13 pieces of jewelry, 12 GPS devices, 11 MP3 players, eight camera lenses, six video cameras and two DVD players

If convicted, he faces up to 10 years in prison.

Passengers were suspicious when they were told in Newark to put all of their liquids in a plastic bag and all of their electronics in a bin marked Pythias.

For the full story, click here.

32 thoughts on “TSA Employee Arrested as Stealing More than 100 Items Out of Luggage and Trying to Sell Them on EBay

  1. TSA is a low budget security company given broad sweeping powers by the US Govt. They hire and have always hired low budget poorly trained illiterate, incompetent criminals and give them badges and unlimited authority.

    The “security officers” they hire are fat, lazy, bungling morons who coulnd’t competently manage the Nacho’s stand at a 7-11. As long as this criminal enterprise is allowed to police our nations airports, millions of Americans will simply refuse to fly, until the Airlines either go bankrupt, or someone gets it.

  2. I just returned from a trip to Washington DC to attend my son’s latest training graduation at Quantico and I had one of my bags misplaced by the airline on the way home so this story really interests me. Luckily, there was nothing missing from my bag and the airline claims another passenger took the wrong bag. I was amazed at the degree of arrogance displayed by the TSA employees at Ohare and Reagan National. On the way out they hassled an elderly woman with a prostethic hand. She was forced to have her hand “examined” and they wouldn’t bring her luggage and shoes with them so my wife stayed at the end of the conveyor so noone would steal this woman’s belongings. This poor woman has enough challenges with this prostethic hand, she didn’t need to be dealt with in this harsh manner by the brainiacs at TSA.

  3. I was harrassed by TSA back in 2003 Rafflaw when travelling from Boston back to DC. I was harrassed for daring to complain about being made to stand in a security line for hours, only to have the line “close” and we were moved to another line. When I complained, I was singled out, searched, and then when I further complained threatened with arrest.

    I looked the officers including a Boston Police Officer in the eye, told them I refused to be treated like a criminal simply for complaining, tore my 1st class ticket back to DC in half, tossed it in the trash, and proceeded to leave the screening area. The cop looked at me and said “do that and you’ll have to go through the line all over again”.

    I looked back at him, smiled, and said, “you apparently don’t get it Einstein. Before I’d get on that airplane and be treated like a criminal, I’d crawl back to DC on my hands and knees over broken glass”. His brain farted a few times, and finally produced a confused stare as he watched me walk out of the screening area (today I’d probably have been arrested).

    I exited the terminal, caught the AVIS shuttle, rented a Chrysler 300 M, and enjoyed a nice, day long leisurely drive back to Washington DC. It was a long drive, cost me a few bucks, but I had FUN. It was “pleasant”, and from that day forward I have refused to put myself in that situtation again.

    I will not give the airlines my money until they figure it out, and in the meantime, everytime I hear of another airline going under, I celebrate by cooking a delicious steak that costs more than a TSA agent earns in an hour, and muse on my small but satisfying role in helping that airline to go under.

    Americans didn’t fly the planes into the towers on 911, and its time the idiots at the Airport stop treating us like we did. And the only way they’re going to do that is to hire something more than braindead Southland Corporation managerial program rejects who require polyester pants to accomodate their waistlines and think mothers with bottled breast milk are a threat to the other passengers.

    They’re lowbrow throwbacks I wouldn’t trust to mow my lawn, and when the Airlines finally stop worrying about cutting prices to drive up business, and instead figure out a way to work with the Airport authority and FAA to cut out the TSA rejects we’re forced to submit to prior to visiting Disneyworld, then maybe they’ll stop going bankrupt and start turning a profit again.

    In the meantime, I’m glad to do my small part to help them learn this simple lesson and refuse to fly until the TSA is no longer permitted to perform any policing at the airport unless it involves emptying waste cans.

  4. CMM,
    That was an interesting description of your “fun” with the TSA. I agree that most of the so-called security measures at the airport are for show and have no effect except to keep people scared. It also allows the restaurants and stores in the airport to do more business since you can’t bring anything with you past security.

  5. They’re just not “security” officers Raff. These people are for the most part of the quality of security guard you’d find in a womans clothing store, or a pawn shop.

    I’m all for good security at airports, but professionals can do it without being intrusive or ignorant. These people are for the most part poorly educated, have poor communication skills, and whats most troublesome, poor observational and interpretive skills.

    This is why you see them wasting their time making some pregnant mom drink her own breast milk or bagging up your soap and shampoo so they don’t have to purchase those items for themselves any longer, and looking inside 70 year old grandmothers shoes for plastic explosives. Meanwhile security investigators are able to regularly and routinely smuggle past these “highly trained experts” everything from box cutters to handguns without being noticed.

    This is embarrassing. I’m embarassed for America. My experience I orignally thought may have been a fluke, but since then I’ve read literally thousands just like it, and I see that this is an epidemic, and one that won’t change until someone actually cares if America ever again looks like it knows what its doing.

    I grew up in a “can do” America. The 60’s and 70’s were a time of relative glory for America, with all the world loving us, and wanting to be like us.

    Thanks to cronyism deals like the federalization of TSA, we’ve become an international joke.

    We look like rubes. Its time America stopped looking stupid, and started looking like the leaders we used to look like. TSA is failed experiment. Back to the old drawing board.

  6. This story is merely one that got caught. Everyone I know who flys has either lost a laptop, watch, or other items from their luggage. They put all the security on the passengers walking through the gates and NONE on the baggage once it leaves your hand.

    They have cameras everywhere to watch us. Why not have cameras watching these bags from start to finish? Why not have security measures to make sure we know whats being put in the cargo holds of these planes?

    We need to do better with security and do it without treating US citizens as potential terrorists. We didn’t fly the planes into the towers on 911, and I think people are getting tired of being treated like they did.

  7. How expensive can it be to install security cameras at all baggage handling points?

    Just put in security cameras and have them monitored by a different agency. T

    That would drastically reduce these thefts, that are not just “300 or so cases”. Those are the 300 they’ve caught. Compare that 300 figure against the list of missing items submitted to the airports. They probably get that many in a day.

    Install cameras at all baggage handling points and have them monitored by a different agency.

    Thats how you do security.

  8. CMM,
    I agree that the TSA employees need to be watched the same way the passengers are watched. Until we regain the constitution, the abusive fake security measures at the airport will continue. The TSA needs to take a hike along with many of the Patriot Act measures that are designed to scare us and keep us in check.

  9. How many people “forget” their laptops, STROLLERS, WHOLE BAGS, Cell Phones, Wallets, and many other personal items. Yes theft happens, but the majority of the time, its the retarded passenger who forgot something somewhere. How many times have I seen someone claim their money was stolen, and then when Police get involved, their money is found on their person. The human race as a whole is corrupt. You people say an 80 year old grandmother can not be a threat, lets get one to go through with an IED strapped to her. Of course being an old person automatically makes you a good person? Right? RIGHT? Charles Manson is in his 70s now. Lets grant him parole, since he cant possibly be a danger to society now. You people need to open your eyes and educate yourselves.

  10. Wow.

    I don’t want any of what your having. It apparently causes paranoia.

    Nobody “lost” 66 cameras, 31 laptop computers, 20 cell phones, 17 sets of electronic games, 13 pieces of jewelry, 12 GPS devices, 11 MP3 players, eight camera lenses, six video cameras and two DVD players. Ok?


    By TSA security personnel.

    How many times have you seen someone call the cops because they were robbed only to have the cops be the thieves?

    Yeah . . . that’s just what I thought.

    The TSA and airport security are theater – sound and fury told by a madman and signifying nothing. Expensive, ineffective, harassing nonsense. The hoops they make you jump through at the airport keep you about as safe as a voodoo doll would. On top of that, they shouldn’t be stealing people’s property.

  11. Very clever post buddha, I gotta say, I love the “voodoo doll” tag. Heck, I agree, the economy has pushed people to do some pretty outrageous things. Although thieves are rife in “good times or bad”. Wait a second, that was a line from a Zeppelin song…

  12. TSA ….. T-hey S-hame A-merica …….. T-aking S-omething A-lways …… T-ourism S-uppression A-gency
    “Integrity, Team Spirit, Innovation” is sewn around the border of the newest TSA patch.
    Have you EVER seen an organization that had to SEW A REMINDER not to STEAL, LIE, and CHEAT on their own shoulders!!!!
    “INTEGRITY” ….. STEAL from the passengers.
    “TEAM SPIRIT” ……. BACK-STAB your CO-Workers and the PASSENGERS
    “INNOVATIVION” ….. in CHEATING on their own tests.
    Supervisors padding their hours to make house payments.
    Supervisors staggering in drunk.
    Supervisors yelling all NON-Christians should leave the country
    Supervisors expressing their desire to see certain U.S. Senators DEAD
    Real good organization.
    By the way, The x-rays that take “virtual photos” destroy your DNA at relatively low energy levels.
    But hey, Michael Chertoff is making lot of MONEY using his status as FORMER HEAD of DHS/TSA to sell them for RAPISCAN.
    A fish rots from the HEAD..

  13. Pedophile, stealing TSA workers, yet another violation of our rights. Add it to the list of gov’t violations of our right:
    They violate the 1st Amendment by placing protesters in cages, banning books like “America Deceived II” and censoring the internet.
    They violate the 2nd Amendment by confiscating guns.
    They violate the 4th and 5th Amendment by molesting airline passengers.
    They violate the entire Constitution by starting undeclared wars for foreign countries.
    Impeach Obama and sweep out the Congress, except Ron Paul.
    (Last link of Banned Book):

  14. Yeah. Look those TSA workers. Niggers and looser whites. Just like in WalMart. What do you expect? This is Amerika. LOL

  15. So one in one-hundred airport screeners has been terminated for theft. Thats a one percent chance of having your property stolen during a warrantless, unconstiitutional search. We are fuming over the TSA screeners and the jobs they do illegally.
    No searches without cause.

  16. […] Un employé de la TSA a été mis sous arrestation pour avoir volé plus d’une centaine d&#821… qu’il sortait des bagages et d’avoir tenté de les revendre sur eBay. Il est accusé d’avoir volé plus de cent objets de valeur, dont 66 caméras, tout en travaillant pour la Transportation Security Administration. Ils devraient vraiment avoir vu au moins les caméras manque à venir. Le Pythias origine (indiqué sur la gauche) assis sur un trépied, parle en charabia, et dérivé de son nom (??????, pythein « pourrir »). […]

  17. Do not put valuable clothing in your checked luggage. TSA keeps an eye out for Burberry raincoats, Aquascutum,Brooks Brothers,and other brand names. Saw a TSA employee leaving work at Pittsburgh International Airport carrying an $800 Burberry raincoat, I doubt if it was his. Boycott flying America. What are these bastards going to do when the airports are empty? And what does that ugly John Pistole and fat pig Janet Napolitano care, they fly on government jets. You are safer not flying anyway. US Airways,United,American,etc are using nuts & bolts made in “China” to cut costs. Look at Southwest’s jets cracking!

  18. US Customs officials steal also. I seen a US Customs whore at Nassau Airport wearing a Gold Rolex wristwatch. These bastards don’t make that kind of money to own a watch that costs thousands. The stupid Allegeny County Police lock knives and guns and other weapons carried by passengers in a locked room on the landside terminal at Pittsburgh International Airport. The nighturn niggers go in through the drop ceiling and help themselves. They also break into luggage in lost and found and brag about their finds: expensive perfume,sunglasses,radios,laptops, GPS, clothing,etc. They think of this as fringe benefits. Don’t fly and stay out of Pittsburgh!

  19. John Pistole couldn’t secure a wet dream. Until baggage handlers,fuelers, caterers,and all ramp personnel are screened flying will never be safe. It’s only a matter of time before an airline worker is bought. In the meantime search grandma and grandpa. John pistole and Janet Napolitano have their heads in their asses. They should both be fired. Don’t fly america! Lets make every airport empty.

  20. I hope the next time network tv news interviews John Pistole the creep is forced to wear a mask. This bastard is so ugly that it makes my skin crawl.

  21. If TSA employees are robbing passengers valuables and cash it’s only a matter of time before they place an explosive device in luggage for the right price. Anyone can be bought, CIA,FBI, etc. Plus TSA filth does not have to go through screening. You are trapped in a police state America! Drive to Canada or take a bus,don’t fly out of the USSA.(USSR) TSA is nothing but a 3rd rate half-assed Gestapo Group with an ugly bastard like John Pistole as director. This jerk couldn’t secure his dick.

  22. […] Un employé de la TSA a été mis sous arrestation pour avoir volé plus d’une centaine d’articl… qu’il sortait des bagages et d’avoir tenté de les revendre sur eBay. Il est accusé d’avoir volé plus de cent objets de valeur, dont 66 caméras, tout en travaillant pour laTransportation Security Administration. […]

  23. This same disgusting thievery of lost & unclaimed property is commonplace at the Port Authority Bus Terminal in NYC. The pubic must be aware of the crimes that are being committed against them when their lost property is stolen from the PABT’s Lost & Found Dept. by Port Authority Bus Terminal Supervisors. Google “Donna Lebourne abc news.” & watch the video, or click on the link below.


    If you lost an item at the PABT & it was returned to you, put in a theft report with the PAPD to get your lost item replaced because most likely your item was stolen by PABT management.

    It would be nice to see the Port Authority aggressively go after the criminals and their enablers that they employ who engage in these same disgraceful crimes and even worse criminal acts, i.e. the unconscionable and highly illegally procedure of throwing lost passports found at the PABT in the garbage in this age of global terrorism and rampant identity theft. Google “found, stolen, trashed by PA.” See the link below.


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