Baggage handler charged with PHL airport theft of uncirculated $100 bills

The FBI this morning arrested a US Airways baggage handler for allegedly stealing $20,000 in uncirculated $100 bills from the Philadelphia International Airport on Oct. 12.

Alex Price, 25, of the 5500 block of Malcolm Street in the Kingsessing section of Southwest Philadelphia, is charged with theft from an interstate shipment after authorities said he took the money while he was working at the airport. Investigators determined that the currency was stolen at some point after it was unpacked from the Dallas-to-Philadelphia flight, but before it was loaded into a Dunbar Security armored car for transport to the U.S. Federal Reserve in East Rutherford, N.J., according to an affidavit.

Dunbar Security officials told authorities they did not discover the theft until they arrived at the Reserve and saw that one of the 60 packages of currency – each containing $3.2 million – was ripped open and $20,000 was missing from it, the affidavit states.

Investigators interviewed Price after US Airways security officials provided them with a list of all the baggage handlers who had access to the flight. He allegedly told them in an interview last week that he was the only US Airways baggage handler who had direct access to the cash and agreed to undergo a polygraph test. Price was taken to the FBI’s Philadelphia headquarters at 9:30 a.m. today.

There, Price allegedly confessed to the crime, then led agents to the $20,000, which they said was hidden in a Nissan Maxima he had parked on the 5500 block of Malcolm Street near his home. The cash matched the yet-to-be released stolen bills, according to the affidavit. Price is scheduled to appear in court tomorrow.