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NEWS
February 5, 2015 | By Ronnie Polaneczky, Daily News Columnist
APPARENTLY, working as a supervisor for the Transportation Security Administration at Philadelphia International Airport comes with a perk: You get to throw people in jail for no good reason and still keep your job. If that's not the case, why is Charles Kieser still employed by the TSA? Roger Vanderklok had the misfortune of going through Kieser's security-screening area at 8 a.m. Jan. 26, 2013, in Terminal B. Vanderklok, 57, is a Philly architect who runs half-marathons.
NEWS
October 23, 2013 | By Joseph A. Slobodzian, Inquirer Staff Writer
To paraphrase the Gershwins, "You say exclusives, and I say explosives. " In the end, it was Common Pleas Court Judge Diana L. Anhalt who on Monday called the whole thing off, acquitting a professor of charges that he told screeners at the Liberty Bell he was carrying explosives. "You're free to go," Anhalt told Carlos Balsas, 42, an urban planning professor at Arizona State University from 2004 to 2011 who has been in custody on $250,000 bail since he was arrested on a felony bomb-threat charge near Independence Mall on Jan. 26. Actually, not free yet. Defense attorney Allan J. Sagot said Balsas, a Portuguese citizen in the United States for 17 years, probably would not get out of prison until Tuesday and might be held longer if immigration officials want to talk to him. Balsas' saga began in January, when he came east looking for work.
NEWS
November 21, 2011 | By Robert Moran, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
A former passenger screener at Philadelphia International Airport was sentenced Monday to 11 years in federal prison for distributing child pornography through Facebook, authorities said. Thomas Gordon Jr., 47, of Northeast Philadelphia, worked for the Transportation Security Administration when he was arrested in March. Gordon possessed more than 600 sexually explicit images of children on his computer and on Internet accounts, said John P. Kelleghan, special agent in charge of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Homeland Security Investigations Office in Philadelphia.
NEWS
November 22, 2011 | By Robert Moran, Inquirer Staff Writer
A former passenger screener at Philadelphia International Airport was sentenced Monday to 11 years in federal prison for distributing child pornography through Facebook, authorities said. Thomas Gordon Jr., 47, of Northeast Philadelphia, worked for the Transportation Security Administration when he was arrested in March. Gordon possessed more than 600 sexually explicit images of children on his computer and on Internet accounts, said John P. Kelleghan, special agent in charge of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Homeland Security Investigations Office in Philadelphia.
NEWS
June 21, 2010 | By Daniel Rubin, Inquirer Columnist
Is it a Philly thing? Are complaints about strange security screenings at the airport something you'll find across the country, or is there a particular problem here? I can't give you statistical certainty on this. But when you listen to frequent fliers like Quality Quinn, you have to wonder. "There is something wrong with the culture at this airport," Quinn, a 55-year-old educational consultant, told me last week. For 20 years she has flown around the country, giving talks on literacy, and in January she moved from Austin, Texas, to Philadelphia.
NEWS
January 29, 2004 | By Marcia Gelbart INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Three security screeners at Philadelphia International Airport have been placed on administrative leave after one of them brought a loaded pistol to work, apparently by mistake. Authorities said yesterday that the screener, whose name was not released, told them he forgot he had the gun, a 9mm Glock semiautomatic, with him when he reported for his shift at Terminal A-East Saturday morning. The man had been to a shooting range the night before and had packed the pistol in the same bag he brought to work, authorities said.
NEWS
November 6, 2001 | By Marcia Gelbart and Thomas J. Gibbons Jr. INQUIRER STAFF WRITERS
A US Airways pilot may face federal charges for making a wisecrack about a weapon as he passed a security checkpoint Saturday at Philadelphia International Airport, law enforcement officials said yesterday. Officials initially were seeking the identity of the pilot accused of making the remark to a security screener. US Airways became aware of his identity late Saturday, but neither the airline nor law enforcement officials would release his name yesterday. "We have begun an internal investigation," US Airways spokesman David Castelveter said.
NEWS
November 4, 2001 | By Akweli Parker and Kathy Brady INQUIRER STAFF WRITERS
Federal officials will review videotapes to identify the pilot whose "inappropriate" remark during a security screening yesterday prompted the evacuation of nearly 1,000 people from a US Airways terminal and 15 planes on the ground at Philadelphia International Airport. Passengers were delayed for nearly an hour and a half after the 1:30 p.m. incident. Some flights were canceled and others delayed, according to David Castelveter, a US Airways spokesman. "It was definitely an inappropriate remark," said Mark Pesce, spokesman for the airport "An individual at [the pilot's]
NEWS
March 11, 2013 | BY MENSAH M. DEAN, Daily News Staff Writer deanm@phillynews.com 215-568-8278
A FORMER Arizona State University assistant professor arrested in January after telling Liberty Bell security personnel that he had explosives in his backpack was held for trial Friday. Carlos Balsas, 41, of Tempe, Ariz., didn't have explosives the morning of Jan. 26, but his alleged threat and odd behavior made security at the historic landmark scramble. It also forced a brief stoppage of traffic on Market Street. After he uttered the threat as a screener was searching his bag, security was called.
NEWS
June 2, 1999 | By Ralph Vigoda, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Pennsylvania state police plan to travel to Ohio today to search a 22-ton piece of construction equipment involved in a fatal accident Thursday night on the Schuylkill Expressway. Troopers also will talk to the driver of the truck that hauled the load, which originated in Essington. The driver, identified by the Ohio Highway Patrol as James Palmer, told investigators he was unaware that a 400-pound to 500-pound piece of the equipment broke off, flew across the expressway, and killed a passenger in an oncoming car. Investigators said the piece broke loose after it struck the underside of a railroad bridge over the expressway just before the Route 202 North ramp.
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ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
February 5, 2015 | By Ronnie Polaneczky, Daily News Columnist
APPARENTLY, working as a supervisor for the Transportation Security Administration at Philadelphia International Airport comes with a perk: You get to throw people in jail for no good reason and still keep your job. If that's not the case, why is Charles Kieser still employed by the TSA? Roger Vanderklok had the misfortune of going through Kieser's security-screening area at 8 a.m. Jan. 26, 2013, in Terminal B. Vanderklok, 57, is a Philly architect who runs half-marathons.
NEWS
October 23, 2013 | By Joseph A. Slobodzian, Inquirer Staff Writer
To paraphrase the Gershwins, "You say exclusives, and I say explosives. " In the end, it was Common Pleas Court Judge Diana L. Anhalt who on Monday called the whole thing off, acquitting a professor of charges that he told screeners at the Liberty Bell he was carrying explosives. "You're free to go," Anhalt told Carlos Balsas, 42, an urban planning professor at Arizona State University from 2004 to 2011 who has been in custody on $250,000 bail since he was arrested on a felony bomb-threat charge near Independence Mall on Jan. 26. Actually, not free yet. Defense attorney Allan J. Sagot said Balsas, a Portuguese citizen in the United States for 17 years, probably would not get out of prison until Tuesday and might be held longer if immigration officials want to talk to him. Balsas' saga began in January, when he came east looking for work.
NEWS
March 11, 2013 | BY MENSAH M. DEAN, Daily News Staff Writer deanm@phillynews.com 215-568-8278
A FORMER Arizona State University assistant professor arrested in January after telling Liberty Bell security personnel that he had explosives in his backpack was held for trial Friday. Carlos Balsas, 41, of Tempe, Ariz., didn't have explosives the morning of Jan. 26, but his alleged threat and odd behavior made security at the historic landmark scramble. It also forced a brief stoppage of traffic on Market Street. After he uttered the threat as a screener was searching his bag, security was called.
NEWS
November 22, 2011 | By Robert Moran, Inquirer Staff Writer
A former passenger screener at Philadelphia International Airport was sentenced Monday to 11 years in federal prison for distributing child pornography through Facebook, authorities said. Thomas Gordon Jr., 47, of Northeast Philadelphia, worked for the Transportation Security Administration when he was arrested in March. Gordon possessed more than 600 sexually explicit images of children on his computer and on Internet accounts, said John P. Kelleghan, special agent in charge of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Homeland Security Investigations Office in Philadelphia.
NEWS
November 21, 2011 | By Robert Moran, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
A former passenger screener at Philadelphia International Airport was sentenced Monday to 11 years in federal prison for distributing child pornography through Facebook, authorities said. Thomas Gordon Jr., 47, of Northeast Philadelphia, worked for the Transportation Security Administration when he was arrested in March. Gordon possessed more than 600 sexually explicit images of children on his computer and on Internet accounts, said John P. Kelleghan, special agent in charge of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Homeland Security Investigations Office in Philadelphia.
NEWS
April 23, 2011 | By John Shiffman, Inquirer Staff Writer
A passenger screener at Philadelphia International Airport is facing charges that he distributed more than 100 images of child pornography via Facebook, records show. Federal agents also allege that Transportation Safety Administration Officer Thomas Gordon Jr. of Philadelphia, who routinely searched airline passengers, uploaded explicit pictures of young girls to an Internet site on which he also posted a photograph of himself in his TSA uniform. Homeland Security agents arrested the TSA officer March 24, and he is being held without bail.
NEWS
March 24, 2011 | By David Dishneau, Associated Press
HAGERSTOWN, Md. - A court-ordered review found Wednesday that security screeners repeatedly failed to recognize signs of mental illness that should have prevented the man blamed for deadly 2001 anthrax attacks from working with the deadly spores at the Army's flagship biodefense laboratory A panel of experts said Bruce Ivins' long history of psychiatric problems did not reach the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases because he...
NEWS
December 6, 2010
A REPORT FROM the front line against terrorism: On vacation Thanksgiving week, at the airport, I made the metal detector beep, and that meant I was to be patted down. The magnetometer beeped because I forgot to remove my belt, but the uniformed officer asked me to step aside so she could search me. That's right, she . It was the day after Thanksgiving and a couple of days after hysterics were screaming that Transportation Security Administration screeners were planning a sexual-harassment kegger party for passengers.
NEWS
November 24, 2010 | By Daniel Rubin, Inquirer Columnist
I flew out of Philadelphia International Airport on Friday. No naked pictures, no Magic Fingers, no problem at all. What, am I not dangerous? For all the increased chatter about the Transportation Security Administration running amok through airports, what I experienced was a surprising nonevent, like what happens to the millions of people each year who pass through checkpoints. But I had coaching. Since I started harping in January on travelers' bad experiences with the TSA, I've been getting calls from a screener who will have to remain unnamed because he'd be fired in an instant if it got out he'd been talking to me. Make eye contact, he said.
NEWS
June 21, 2010 | By Daniel Rubin, Inquirer Columnist
Is it a Philly thing? Are complaints about strange security screenings at the airport something you'll find across the country, or is there a particular problem here? I can't give you statistical certainty on this. But when you listen to frequent fliers like Quality Quinn, you have to wonder. "There is something wrong with the culture at this airport," Quinn, a 55-year-old educational consultant, told me last week. For 20 years she has flown around the country, giving talks on literacy, and in January she moved from Austin, Texas, to Philadelphia.
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