Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Hold on to Your Luggage Bag in Airports

I travel quite heavily two to three years back and each time I travel I will split my personal belongings into two luggage bags. In case, one gets lost I would still have spare underwear in my handheld luggage bag.

My mom would always tell me to be careful with my bags. The big luggage bad is normally checked in, so it was not within my control and always pray that it would arrive safely at my final destination. See how insecured I felt as an airline passenger after seeing so many of my colleagues/friends experiencing such event.

Most of the time I would travel alone and I don't leave my bag lying around without the corner of my eye having a sight of it. When I'm in the airport lounge, at times you don't get a table near the food counters and I would grab a few magazines to be put on top of it while I quickly zoom to the food counter.

Upon arrival at the final destination's airport, I would usually keep an eye on my luggage bag at the carousel. Even if I was standing further down the carousel, I would wait patiently for my bag. Wouldn't want someone to pry open the bag to insert something into it and put it back onto the carousel without you knowing it.

I don't take things for granted, call it kiasu or too careful. The old folks would always say "Don't carry other people's bags even for a moment".

Imagine a guy who held on to his luggage bags was almost framed for carrying drugs into Japan. The Japan Customs Department has the cheek to insert a small packet of cannabis into a traveller's luggage bag and the reason for doing so was to test their sniffer dogs capability in detecting such drugs.

The Cathay Pacific passenger, coming in from Hong Kong, didn't even notice that the drugs were planted in his luggage bags when he was collecting his luggage bags at the carousel and upon passing the immigration and customs counters, nothing happened. The stupid dogs didn't even get to sniff anything and the passenger disappeared into thin air.

The relevant government personnels held frantic searches for this traveller and managed to retrieve the drugs the following day at the traveller's hotel. What an embarassment!

What if the dog managed to sniff it? Do you mean the traveller will have to go through the hundreds of eyes staring at him when the dog starts to bark? Do we, as unsuspecting passengers, need to go through such humiliation just because you need to train your dogs?

Can't anyone from the Japan Customs Department be called to just walk pass the dogs? Seriously, I really wonder what kind of logic they have in their minds for getting unsuspecting passengers to play that role. You mean that the dog could differentiate whether that person was actually a customs officer in disguise or a real passenger.

Reading: Japan says sorry for planting drugs on passenger - The Age
Tags: Drugs, Drugs Sniffer Dog, Japan, Japan Customs, Cathay Pacific, Cannabis



Blogger acura said...

Getting the passenger to be the white mice for their own experiments. Somebody is going to get fired over it I am sure!

BTW, your photos with the other cows are everywhere haha

25 June, 2008 16:57  
Blogger Borneo Falcon said...

I understand your predicament when traveling alone as I also travel alone, past and present. I do separate my bags but my hand luggage is usually contains valuable items only, nothing to do with clothes or underwear. Good thinking also. Maybe will consider for my future travel.

25 June, 2008 17:04  
Blogger Johnny Ong said...

acura - totally nonsense on the white mice

borneo - just some spares in the carry-on luggage

25 June, 2008 22:35  
Blogger mylou said...

i had fun looking at the cow picts here :)...

26 June, 2008 00:43  
Blogger Simon Ho said...

omg. that's terrible man. though it'll make you a rockstar at that point of time when the dog sniffs you out but it's really unethical.

26 June, 2008 01:50  
Blogger Johnny Ong said...

mylou - haha, it was a fun party

simon ho - rockstar? just imagine what other passengers would think of u ....

26 June, 2008 10:35  

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