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Spectacular robbery reveals vulnerabilities in Panama’s airport

Panama, Oct 7 (Prensa Latina) The robbery of more than one million damaged dollars in the cargo area of Panama's Tocumen International Airport on Thursday opened a debate on warnings due to lack of security and revealed vulnerabilities.

La Estrella de Panama newspaper denounced on Thursday that Emilio Pesantez, then director of International Civil Aviation Security, delivered a report to the Presidency ‘some months ago’ about the precarious security conditions in areas of the air terminal.

The lack of surveillance devices in the passengers’ area keeps the aircraft parking unsupervised, stated the document to which the newspaper had access, which warned about the absence of video cameras at key points.

The robbery, which took place on early Wednesday and was described by local media as ‘spectacular,’ showed that it was planned, Prosecutor Julio Villarreal said.

The amount of the damaged dollars stolen (it is speculated one million and a half) and the number of participants in the theft are still to be determined.

Authorities do not rule out internal complicity taking into account the logistics of the robbery, for which there are still no arrests, and the vehicle used was later found abandoned on a city street.

In early September, a transnational network of drug traffickers who used air transport through Tocumen International Airport was dismantled, and 27 people were arrested.


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