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Airline worker with $282K in backpack arrested

Published:Wednesday | March 30, 2016 | 12:00 AM
File A Delta Airline's plane.

A Delta Airlines employee sneaked US $282,000 in a backpack into Palm Beach International Airport with instructions to deliver it to a passenger in a restroom, federal officials said.

Jean Yves Selius, 29, of Boynton Beach, was arrested Saturday after an airport security officer saw him using his security badge to enter the boarding area of the terminal from the tarmac, bypassing the security gates, according to an affidavit filed by Homeland Security agent Jon A. Longo. Selius was dressed in civilian clothes and not his Delta gate agent uniform.

The security officer asked Selius to open his backpack, which held several packets of cash wrapped in clear, vacuum-sealed bundles, Longo wrote. A Palm Beach County sheriff's dog detected drug residue on the backpack, the affidavit says.

Longo wrote that he and another agent interviewed Selius, who told them he was being paid $900 to $1,000 by two men he knows only as "Ricky" and "John" to deliver the backpack to an unknown passenger in a bathroom, who would take the money to New York City's LaGuardia Airport.

Selius allegedly told the agents that he had made four previous deliveries, receiving $3,900 from the pair and he realised the money did not "come from a good cause". He said Ricky and John approached him about a year ago after learning he worked at the airport.

Selius is being held without bail on federal charges of illegal money transmitting pending a Thursday court hearing. He faces a maximum of five years in prison.