Netizen Rhed Austria de Guzman, a US green card holder, who had just recently returned to California, USA, narrated an alarming experience at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) just before she departed last September 18, 2015.
She arrived early at the airport. Since she was on a wheelchair and had three bags, several porters were quick to assist her – with one pushing her wheelchair while another carried her bags. As was the procedure, her bags went through the x-ray machine.
De Guzman was puzzled, however, when the staff called to inform her there was something wrong with her luggage. Knowing she was not carrying anything illegal and even only had food in the bags, she certainly had nothing to worry about. To her surprise, one of the airport staff asked whether she was carrying any amulet or anything similar in one of her bags.
Knowing fully well that there’s none of those inside her luggage, she firmly said so but a male staff inspecting her luggage magically “found” two bullets inside. De Guzman alleged that the staff had his back towards her when he was inspecting her bags.
Without asking further questions, they asked for her passport and green card, which she reluctantly handed over. She insisted the bullets weren’t hers but was only told that this would be placed on her record, something that would surely reflect on her future travels.
De Guzman was alarmed by this, especially since it took a long time for her to work for her green card and she knew in her heart that she never brought bullets in her luggage. What would happen to her now?
When the lady who took her papers went back, De Guzman pleaded for her to check the situation again so she won’t receive a bad record because the bullets weren’t hers, anyway. A porter by her side whispered that she should just settle the matter – and P500 would suffice.
Quickly jumping on this lifeline, De Guzman pleaded for the lady to help her. She was told to secretly hand the money so the lady’s supervisor will not see the transaction.
So, while a second body check was performed, De Guzman gave the lady P500. She also gave an extra P200 to the porter who “helped” her. There was no problem afterwards and she was allowed to go without further questions.
Here’s her full account of the incident:
Firearms and Ammunition in Air Travel
You can bring firearms and ammunition when traveling on an airplane but these must be securely packed and checked in. You must also bring the necessary permits as well as prepare to pay extra fees for these potentially dangerous items.
These rules apply to all firearms, including realistic replicas such as airsoft and pellet guns.