Customs Agent at JFK Stole $100 Bills from Passengers’ Handbags

By Anna Breuer on 19 April 2019
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IMG_3933 (2)A customs agent assigned to John F. Kennedy International Airport was arrested Thursday for taking cash from bags of passengers he was supposed to be inspecting.

Joseph Cialone, who lives in East Meadow, New York, admitted according to the criminal complaint that he stole $100 bills from handbags belonging to arriving international travelers on over 100 occasions in the period from April 2018 to April 2019, according to the complaint.

Cialone, an employee of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection service, was assigned to the Smuggling Interdiction Unit during that period of time.  The complaint further states that he, while conducting searches wearing latex gloves, would pull $100 bills from handbags belonging to passengers and hold them in his fist.  He would then pull the glove off, leaving the $100 bill inside, and pocket the glove.  Afterwards, he would go to the W.C., where he would place the stolen money into his wallet.

At the time he was arrested, two plastic gloves with $100 bills were found in his pocket.

The agent told police he sought out women with large purses because the larger bags made it easier to disguise what he was doing, according to the complaint. The arrest resulted from a complaint filed by a victim of Cialone. The resultant investigation, which included a review of surveillance footage, showed him stealing $100 bills multiple times.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

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