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Airport worker warned in scanner ogling claim

[ 2010-03-25 14:06]     字号 [] [] []  
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The anti-terror cameras produce a clear body outline.

An airport security worker has been questioned by police after being caught ogling images of a female colleague taken by a new anti-terror body scanner.

John Laker, 25, faces the sack after being given a police warning for harassment.

His Heathrow colleague Jo Margeston, 29, says she was horrified when he took her photograph with one of the controversial devices, which 'see' beneath clothing, and made a lewd remark about the size of her breasts.

She says she is too upset to work following the incident two weeks ago.

This is thought to be the first time an airport worker has been found abusing one of the controversial devices, introduced after the failed Christmas Day bomb plot to blow up a jet over Detroit in the U.S.

The £80,000 machines show a clear body outline and have been described as the equivalent of ' virtual strip searching'.

Miss Margeston is understood to have entered the scanner by mistake, only to find Laker pressing a button to take a photograph.

She told her bosses and police, and is now being represented by Liberty, the human rights campaign group.

At her home near the airport, she said she was still shocked about the incident. 'I can't bear to think about the body scanner thing,' she told the Sun.

'I'm totally traumatised. I've spoken to the police about it. I'm in too much of a state to go to work.'

Laker was questioned by police and given a formal warning for harassment, which is one level below a caution.

A Scotland Yard spokesman yesterday confirmed it had received an allegation about an incident at Terminal 5 on March 10.

A spokesman for BAA, which runs Heathrow, said: 'We treat any allegations of inappropriate behaviour or misuse of security equipment very seriously and these claims are investigated thoroughly.

'If these claims are found to be substantiated, we will take appropriate action.'

Campaign groups have criticised the introduction of the new scanners, saying that the revealing nature of the images they provide could breach the right to privacy.

The Government and airport operators say that the security staff viewing images from the scanners cannot actually see the passengers passing through them.

But Alex Deane, of the privacy campaign group Big Brother Watch, said abuses were simply 'inevitable'.

He added: 'For every official given peeping tom powers stupid enough to voice his ogling out loud, there are plenty more eyeing up lawabiding travellers but keeping their leering to themselves.'




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