UK airport worker warned in scanner ogling claim

Wed Mar 24, 2010 11:04am EDT
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LONDON (Reuters Life!) - A security worker at London's Heathrow Airport has received a police warning and faces disciplinary action over claims he ogled a female colleague using a full-body scanner, officials said on Wednesday.

The 25-year-old worker made lewd comments after his colleague Jo Margetson, 29, mistakenly strayed into the scanner, which can see through clothes to produce an image of the body, the Sun newspaper reported.

The case is believed to be the first of its kind since the full-body scanners were rushed into service at a number of British airports in the wake of an attempt by a suspected Muslim extremist to blow up a plane bound for Detroit on December 25.

They are now being rolled out at airports across the world.

Details of the incident at Heathrow's Terminal 5 on March 10 emerged on the day lawmakers said concerns that the scanners were intrusive had been overblown.

Margetson told the Sun she had been "traumatized" by what had happened and had informed police and her bosses at the airport's operator BAA.

"We treat any allegations of inappropriate behavior or misuse of security equipment very seriously and these claims are being investigated thoroughly," said a spokeswoman for BAA.

"If found to be substantiated, we will take appropriate action."

A Metropolitan Police spokesman said officers had been informed of the allegation and "a first instance harassment warning has been issued to a 25-year-old man."   Continued...

<p>A security officer examines a computer screen showing a scan from a RapiScan full-body scanner, being trialled by Manchester Airport, during a photocall at the airport, in Manchester, northern England January 7, 2010. REUTERS/Phil Noble</p>