September 21, 2017 / 1:23 AM / a year ago

Lost luggage - 'Mischievous' Singapore handler sent bags astray at world's best airport

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - A man who worked as a baggage handler at Singapore’s Changi Airport swapped tags on hundreds of bags, sending the luggage to the wrong destinations, the Straits Times newspaper reported.

FILE PHOTO: A general view of the check-in area of the departure hall during a media tour of Changi Airport Terminal 4 in Singapore July 25, 2017. REUTERS/Edgar Su -

Tay Boon Keh, a 63 year-old working as a baggage handler for a sub-contractor of the Changi Airport Group, was charged in court on Tuesday with 286 counts of mischief, the newspaper said.

He did not explain his actions, but intends to plead guilty, it said. The next hearing is on Oct 17, when, if convicted, he can be jailed for up to one year and fined for each charge.

Luggage originally bound for various parts of the world, including Perth, Manila, Frankfurt, London and San Francisco, was affected, according to court documents. Tay is believed to have changed baggage tags almost every day from November until February, they said.

An airport spokesman said there was no breach of security.

Nearly 59 million passengers used Changi Airport in 2016. The world’s sixth busiest airport for international traffic, it flies passengers to 380 cities on over 100 airlines and was voted the world’s best airport in 2017 by the Skytrax air travel consultancy.

It handles about 70,000 bags per day, according to the Changi Airport Group website.

Reporting by Raju Gopalakrishnan; Editing by Michael Perry

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