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Ministry orders checks after Budapest airport luggage looting

Transport

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The Ministry of National Development announced unscheduled checks at Liszt Ferenc International Airport in the wake of a string of recent reported thefts of items from passenger luggage. The operator of the facility, Budapest Airport, denies any responsibility.

Online news portal index.hu reported last week a post on Facebook by the Embassy of South Korea in Budapest, which drew attention to the increase in luggage looting cases at Liszt Ferenc International Airport. In the post, the embassy recommended passengers traveling to Budapest keep their valuables with them in hand luggage during their flight. The post added that passengers whose items were stolen from luggage during their travel will receive no compensation.  

Index.hu quoted several passengers who made angry comments on the Facebook page of Budapest Airport regarding looted luggage. The story was picked up by news portal 444.hu, which revealed that several passengers were robbed on the night of January 19-20. In all cases, passengers had to wait an unusually long time for their luggage, which they received opened and robbed of valuables.

Contacted by 444.hu, Budapest Airport responded that its employees do not come into any contact whatsoever with passengersʼ luggage, which is handled by subcontractors of each airline. On Tuesday, the website reported that the ministry had ordered checks regarding the luggage looting. Procedures of Budapest Airport and subcontractors will be examined as well.

According to 444.hu, four such providers are operating at the airport: Celebi, Malév Ground Handling, Menzies and Budport. It speculated that if luggage was looted in Budapest, it is likely that an employee or employees of one of these four companies was responsible.

Index.hu notes that a significant reduction in such cases would involve massive investments in technology and personnel, which is not likely any time soon.

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