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Police investigate how a Stowaway woman slipped through airport security

By Lagi Keresoma

APIA, SAMOA – 29 DECEMBER 2022: A Samoan woman who stowed away on a Fiji Airways flight on Christmas Eve and was returned to Samoa on the next flight from Nadi, Fiji is yet to be charged.

Police Commissioner Auapaau Logoitino Filipo told Talamua today that the woman has not been charged and police are investigating how she slipped through the Faleolo International Airport security system.

There is not much detail about the incident on how the woman bypassed airport security and immigration screening.

Auapaau said there is speculation that the woman must be an employee at the airport with authentic identification to access all areas at the airport is a possibility, but that can only be confirmed after the investigation.

The woman was discovered when the flight landed in Nadi, Fiji on Christmas Eve and is suspected to have hidden in the toilet for the duration of the flight from Samoa.

Once discovered, the Fijian authorities put her back on the plane’s next trip to Samoa.

The incident has raised concern over the electronic security system at the Faleolo airport and criticism was also directed at the Customs and Immigration offices.

Talamua’s source said there had been a recent problem with the airport’s electronic security system.

When the system broke down, doors and other security locked facilities were operated manually, which raised concern over people getting easy access to prohibited areas.

Auapaau said all will be cleared once the investigation is completed.