A second man has been arrested in connection with his role in the theft of a bag containing approximately $258,205 in bulk cash at Kennedy Airport on Sept. 24.
Emmanuel Asuquo Okon, 33, a resident of Springfield Gardens, was arrested over the weekend by the FBI and arraigned Monday in Brooklyn federal court for allegedly helping Quincy Thorpe, 40, carry out the heist.
Authorities cuffed Quincy Thorpe, 40, at his Brooklyn home on Sept. 26 and he was arraigned in Brooklyn federal court later in the day.
According to the criminal complaint, an armored vehicle delivered eight bags of cash to the airport to be transported to Miami on Sept. 24. Federal authorities say Thorpe, a baggage handler for Delta Ground Services, was responsible for scanning and loading the eight bags onto the Delta flight.
When the baggage was off-loaded in Miami it was discovered one bag was missing. Federal prosecutors say the stolen bag contained bulk cash in U.S. and foreign currency of approximately $258,205 in value.
Security surveillance footage obtained from Delta shows Thorpe scanning and loading some of the eight bags onto Flight 1225 at Gate C-70, but not scanning the stolen bag, instead placing it in a container attached to a vehicle that he drove off in. Additionally, the other seven bags, which were loaded onto the plane, were scanned by a scanner with an identification unique to the defendant, according to the criminal complaint.
Additional surveillance video obtained by the FBI shows Thorpe driving the Delta Airlines van to a parking lot behind Building 21 where a blue Nissan Sentra arrived and pulled up alongside the van. The video shows the Nissan was driven by a black male with a beard, which is consistent with the appearance of Okon, and a witness positively identified Okon as the Sentra driver as the defendant, according to the criminal complaint.
Two minutes after the Sentra arrived, both vehicles left at the same time. The Delta Airlines van returned to the Terminal 2 secured area of operations. As the van proceeded through the security checkpoint the video shows Thorpe was no longer in the vehicle but minutes later Thorpe entered Terminal 2 using his security identification.
Interviews with witnesses identified Okon as a friend and close associate of Thorpe whose domestic partner owns a blue Nissan Sentra.
On Sunday, Sept. 29, law enforcement located the blue Nissan Sentra registered to the defendant Okon’s domestic partner in Springfield Gardens who consented to a search of the vehicle. During the search, an FBI agent found an envelope containing a transfer manifest belonging to the Victim Security Company and a Delta Air Waybill for the Sept. 24 flight 1225, and associated with “Piece 8 of 8.” Okon is not an employee of the Victim Security Company or Delta Airlines.
Okon was charged with theft from interstate shipment and released on $80,000 bond.