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Wow. A Stowaway Made It All the Way to Miami

Wow. A Stowaway Made It All the Way to Miami
Jeff Edwards

Baggage handlers found an unauthorized passenger in the belly of an aircraft that had just flown into Miami from Havana. The ramp workers at first believed there was a loose pet hiding in the cargo hold of Swift Air, but the stowaway soon identified himself as a human before politely asking for a drink of water. 

A Cuban national risked a daring journey in the belly of a flight from Havana José Martí International Airport (HAV) to Miami International Airport (MIA), but it looks like his gamble won’t be paying off. According to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the 26-year-old was not admitted to the country and will instead be processed as a stowaway under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA).

“Individuals are taking extreme risks when they try to conceal themselves in confined spaces and CBP is trained and ready to respond with appropriate actions to prevent serious injuries or death whenever possible,” Miami International Airport Port Director Christopher Maston said in a statement announcing the arrest. “Teams of CBP officers maintain a robust posture regarding the enforcement of our immigration laws while facilitating trade and travel at ports of entry statewide.”

The statement went on to describe the agency’s proven track record of flushing out even well-concealed stowaways. It was noted that the CBP has found at least 20 stowaways, hidden in commercial aircraft, trains, shipping containers and semi-trucks, this year alone.

In this case, however, it appears it was baggage handlers at the airport who were responsible for intercepting the stowaway from Cuba. According to Miami NBC-affiliate WTVJ, ramp agents unloading the Swift Air charter flight on Friday, at first believed that there was a large dog scurrying around the cargo hold, but when the dog in question not only denied being a dog but also asked for a drink of water, the ground crew realized they had a human trespasser on their hands. The airport workers then surrounded the unauthorized international traveler until authorities could arrive on the scene.

 

[Featured Image: YouTube/Skylite Productions]

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