Airport Security And Weed

Discussion in 'Legal Issues' started by pvsurfer, Feb 10, 2009.

  1. bubagump

    bubagump New Member

    I would go with BartSimpson's advice rather than listening to many of the fear mongers in this thread. This blanket "don't do it" advice is really unhelpful. The tighty whitey method is quite "foolproof" as long as you follow all the other steps of not drawing too much attention to yourself and to look professional.
    2 people like this.
  2. blondie0420

    blondie0420 Locks of Gold

    Ummm....what? TSA is part of the Department of Homeland Security. Seeing that the Dept. of Homeland Security is a federal law enforcement agency and TSA is part of it, TSA is a law enforcement agency.

    The machines are also capable of detecting drugs, though. Just because TSA's website doesn't say in big bold letters, "We're screening for drugs," doesn't mean they're not.

    Bart, I understand that bringing weed on an airplane, especially using the "tighty whitety" method is certainly do-able and that the number of "caught" stories about this type of thing are limited on this forum.* But to suggest that it is safe, foolproof, or a good idea (or whatever it is you are trying to say) is a really bad idea. People can have their lives ruined when they get caught attempting to bring drugs on domestic flights.

    Also, in aiports - restricted areas, including spaces beyond security checkpoints, are governed by federal law. I'm surprised you didn't know that (and that you would actually go so far as to say that the opposite is true). :shrug:

    *Did you ever consider that maybe the relative infrequency of these types of airport-caught-stories is largely the result of very few people ever attempting to bring pot on an airplane in the first place? For instance, I've been busted for possession in my town, and I've shared parts of my story about that here. But I'll never be sharing a story about getting busted at the airport because I will never, ever bring weed there to get busted with.

    It's not the airlines...it's TSA, doing it's job. TSA doesn't lose money or business if they pull someone out of the airport for trying to bring weed on an airplane.
    3 people like this.
  3. BartSimpson

    BartSimpson Sr. Member

    Blondie - you are full of crappola.

    I have demonstrated in numerous posts that the idea of domestic airports serving as dragnets for MJ is silly.

    Exactly what experience do you offer that counters my years of daily travel in airports? Bull-effing-shiat. You are absolutely wrong.

    I strongly suggest you get your facts straight before you post - like the TSA is a law enforcement agency. You are clearly wrong in this matter.
    2 people like this.
  4. blondie0420

    blondie0420 Locks of Gold

    "Crappola?" "Bull-effing-shiat?" That's nice.

    I don't have any experience that counters yours, but I'm still capable of research.

    TSA employs Federal Air Marshals who have arrest powers. The TSA Screeners aren't LEOs, but the TSA Federal Air Marshals certainly are. (That link will take you to TSA's recruitment website, note the top of the page: Law Enforcement Recruitment; and then below that: Office of Law Enforcement – Federal Air Marshal Service.) :shrug:


    Edit: Anyway, Bart, are you honestly making the claim that because marijuana doesn't pose a security risk to an aircraft that individuals attempting to bring it on an airplane shouldn't have to worry about getting into trouble? Why do they have drug dogs at ANY airport then?
    2 people like this.
  5. BartSimpson

    BartSimpson Sr. Member

    oh, for effucks sake - Federal Air Marshals?

    TSA Screeners are not Law Enforcement Officers, period. They do not qualify under any terms for such status.

    The US Coast Guard is also under the Department of Homeland Security, but some zit-faced kid busting barnacles off of a bouy is not a Law Enforcement Officer.

    In fact, the Federal Government is very specific about these matters - and you fail significantly if you assert that the TSA Screener is capable of arresting someone.
    2 people like this.
  6. BartSimpson

    BartSimpson Sr. Member

    Exactly which airport does the use of drug dogs take place for domestic travelers?

    It doesn't happen, girlfriend.

    4th Amendment, babydoll.
  7. blondie0420

    blondie0420 Locks of Gold

    Yeah, I know. The TSA Federal Air Marshals are LEOs. The Screeners are not. I thought I made that clear when I said, "TSA employs Federal Air Marshals who have arrest powers. The TSA Screeners aren't LEOs, but the TSA Federal Air Marshals certainly are." :confused:

    Wrong again. :rolleyes:

    From the Coast Guard's website:

    "The Coast Guard, as the primary maritime law enforcement agency of the United States, is authorized to make inquiries, examinations, inspections, searches, seizures, and arrests upon the high seas and waters over which the United States has jurisdiction, for the prevention, detection, and suppression of violations of laws of the United States. This authorization is found in 14 USC 89.

    "The law enforcement mission of the Coast Guard includes the enforcement of laws pertaining to customs, immigration, natural resources, illegal firearms, contraband, smuggling, stolen vessels, boating safety, merchant marine safety, port safety and security, marine environmental protection, fisheries laws and agreements, and criminal statutes.

    "The law enforcement mission of the Coast Guard is dynamic and growing."

    The Screener is not. The Federal Air Marshal is.

    Numerous court decisions have determined that a sniff of your person or property does not consitute a search. If it's not a search, then it can't violate your Fourth Amendment rights.

    See: (all of these have to do with searches at airports, too)
    US v. Bronstein, 521 F. 2d 459 (1975) Second Circuit
    US v. Martell 654 F. 2d 1356 (1981) Ninth Circuit
    US v. Waltzer 682 F. 2d 370 (1982) Second Circuit - in this one, the dog smelled the passenger and alerted - still wasn't a "search"

    Also, I've seen canine units at airports. Were they drug sniffing dogs or bomb sniffing dogs? I don't know. I'm just glad I didn't have any weed on me that would've caused me to find out the hard way.
    2 people like this.
  8. ninfan77

    ninfan77 New Member

    WOW... There's a thread covering this already...

    Bart has this nailed down, 100%. And to the guy who says just STEPPING FOOT in an airport allows you to be searched anytime anywhere... i'll probably get warned for this.. but that's just fkin stupid.

    Many of us have worked on both sides of the counter.... TSA... ramp agents, customer service agents.. security checkpoints... Myself included. If a TSA agent or other airport employee asks to search you while walking around the airport... tell them no and continue walking. They have no authority, ZERO as law enforcement. They are to secure the boarding area and safety of the plane from explosives. Even then, if they come across anything illegal, they have to notify the local LEO which is usually a couple steps away.

    And Federal Air Marshals don't stand at security checkpoints in a white shirt and trousers checking your sneakers and laptop. Their role in the TSA has nothing to do with the day to day passenger. They are their for REAL threats. If you get caught with weed in your pants, the local cops will arrest you at the airport, and you'll be processed by them, NOT the Federal air marshals.

    And YES... the areas BEYOND a security checkpoint are within federal jurisdiction, as well as local law enforcement. But to think that a federal agent is going to take the time away from his other duties to process a 22yo with 3grams of weed.. is ABSURD. In addition many senior airline employees are trained in security screening, awareness, security procedures in the airport etc... When i worked there i was responsible for walking a specific section of the airport, checking secure areas for possible threats. It's not hard by any means, my point is that there are a number of people at an airport that are responsible for security, but very very few of them have any real authority to stop and detain you.

    The tighy whitey method, used correctly works 99.9% of the time. Nothing is 100%, you ARE taking a risk but you can do it.
    2 people like this.
  9. BartSimpson

    BartSimpson Sr. Member

    Because Blondie's heart is in the right place, I did not respond. There were so many things wrong with her response that the proper reader would notice. Thanks to ninfan77.

    She wants to make sure the person who lacks the experience to travel with weed does not do so - I want the truth out there so that people do not think that airports are secret dragnets to catch pot-smokers. These two concepts are not in opposition, so it should stand - if you are worried about a Federal Air Marshal busting you for weed at a security checkpoint, or a Coast Guard recruit busting you for hotboxing the Yacht Club, you shouldn't smoke weed.


    Otherwise, never put it in your luggage - checked or carry-on - put it in your whitey-tighties.
    2 people like this.
  10. rob

    rob New Member

    :hail: you win :p

    too much :mj2:, i just saw like a 60 min special on the xray machine ones and thought that was what this whole article was about haha, i failed
  11. troublemaker420

    troublemaker420 New Member

    I can attest, it works! Successfully carried to Las Vegas monday morning, no issues whatsoever, and no issues with a clean glass piece in my checked baggage, AND my bag was handsearched by TSA, as I was informed by a little slip of paper inside once arriving at our hotel.. The rest of the Vegas experience is another post altogether, but I'll get to that later.
  12. troublemaker420

    troublemaker420 New Member

    False....you CANNOT be charged federally for weed in an airport. This is the kind of misinformation that only serves to confuse and distract people from factual information. I know you had good intentions Sofa, but unless you are 100% sure of something's accuracy, here isn't the place to post it. If you do bring weed to an AP, and get caught, you'll face local charges for possession, just as if you were caught a mile or 10 from the airport. For what its worth, when a little common sense is exerted, theres very little risk in traveling with mj domestically, and if you do have the misfortune of getting caught, you'll face local charges in whatever jurisdiction you are in. I have no clue where this myth about federal charges got started, but its as entirely untrue as the puffer machine searching for weed (as far as domestic travel is concerned)/ Are the machines capable? most certainly, however, they are NOT currently being used for drug detection, only for explosives, etc. Fearmongering doesn't help the people who are going to try this anyway. Lets give them actual info, rather than simply trying to scare them out of doing it. I'd ahve no issues bringing weed wioth me through any US airport when traveling domestically, and no one else should either if they utilize the whitey tighty method.
  13. BartSimpson

    BartSimpson Sr. Member

    If TM42 doesn't mind - I can address this for you.

    There is a significant difference in the TSA Screening (for aircraft and airport security) during your domestic departure, and the Customs Inspection on your arrival at an international destination. Customs Inspectors are specifically looking for Marijuana, are trained professionals, and know all the tricks.

    I personally do not promote the international smuggling of personal use amounts for three reasons:

    First, we have a young membership on here who will take advice out of context and not fully understand the principles behind the advice. For example - it is youthful folly to focus on the dog search, and not understand that there are other methods used such as behavioral detection. So the freshman will triple vacuum pack, smear it with something, tape it to their leg and then break into a cold sweat at the mere sight of a dog, which is a behavior observed by the inspector leading to discovery. God forbid they get selected randomly for an interview . . .

    There are many layers of methods used; dogs, behavior detection, random searches, x-ray machines and background intelligence for example - focusing on a single method, such as "puffer" machines, is not understanding the principles behind the layers of inspections.

    Second, young members here rarely have sufficient international travel experience to engage in such practices - something you will see me address with: "If you have to ask the question, you should NOT be doing it". Can personal amounts be smuggled internationally? Sure, but it's not a good idea if you never been to the destination before, are not familiar with all the Customs Inspections and lack the demeanor to handle the stresses involved. Once you have achieved this level of experience along with maturity - it becomes much less worth it anyway.

    For the most part you can ask a cab driver, hotel staff or bar tender in any tourist destination and find personal amounts easily.

    Thirdly, getting busted in another country is going to be a huge problem involving lots of your family's money and much discomfort for you. Do not underestimate the risk of being busted when smoking, too. It's not like a platoon of US Marines are going to come in and rescue you, or the Secretary of State is going to call the leader of the Country on your behalf - you may not even be entitled to a lawyer or a hearing. When in a foreign country, smoking MJ should be a very private and discrete activity.

    While none of my comments are specific to your circumstance or abilities - it is a general rule among most of us long-time veterans to discourage international smuggling because we know that it is a huge risk for little gain. I know, it's Spring Break and you want to bust out some bud, but it might just not be worth it.
    2 people like this.
  14. SleepyJohn

    SleepyJohn Sr. Member

    We've been through The LA Airport, within the last 5 Years. We'd say, FORGET IT, it ain't wourt the Dogs,Machines,X,and, other Rays,Scans, procedures,quota,and, apperance,of the intended individual. If You Look Super Innocent, ZAP!!!, out come the rubber gloves! Why bother, Money buys pot, throughout California. We bet You could score, with friends, in an hour! Outside, or driving Up,&,down Highway 1.
  15. BartSimpson

    BartSimpson Sr. Member

    Again, lacking the proper use of grammar and punctuation, this is not understandable. Not to mention it is completely out-of-context.

    And who is this "We" you speak of?

    BTW, as I write this, I am sitting in LAX having gone through a TSA checkpoint less than 5 minutes ago using the whitey-tightie method.
  16. BostonB

    BostonB New Member

    Bart:

    I've used the tighty whitey method for years with no problems. It's been about one year since I've last used it. Since that time, I've been reading about the full body scanning machines that have been installed in many airports (including mine). From what I've read, it seems like these full body scanning machines could detect a package near my "package". What am I missing? Why wouldn't the package show up on a scan? I'm leaving for vacation to Florida in a few days and am still on the fence as to what t do.
  17. BartSimpson

    BartSimpson Sr. Member

    Boston - those two forms of body scanners are used in the secondary search, and are optional. Frankly, if the general public knew how revealing these units were, nobody would elect to use them. If you have not done so, google image search Backscatter x-ray and MMW. The subjects are basically naked in the image - even with the alleged "blurring" of your private parts.

    Since they are optional, if you are selected for secondary search, you ask for the pat-down. I have done this about a dozen times and always say something to the effect that I have concerns about the privacy of the image (being a famous actor and movie star). Even though no reason is necessary, I want to instill in the Screeners that the general public is not interested in the backroom peep show.

    So it remains, the whitey-tighty method is safe. Detailed information about the two systems is available on the TSA Blog directly, which is a good read if you haven't traveled in awhile. For example, airport checkpoints have various lanes for the experienced traveler or families which may have changed since your last trip.

    Good Travels.
    4 people like this.
  18. pvsurfer

    pvsurfer New Member

    Hey man i just got home, i decided to not bring it only because i had a close call with my parents before i left. But everything would have been fine if i were to have brought it, i didnt even see a puffer in security :confused: but whatever.

    And Mr. Bowles is still here, im ready for him to leave cause he can be a hardass and is making a point about cracking down on weed this year. But no biggie, just dont bring it to school. Was he a principle when you went there???
  19. BartSimpson

    BartSimpson Sr. Member

    May I have your attention, please.

    Look at the date of this post. Things changed today.

    Backscatter and MMW are being introduced as replacements to the Metal Detector, with the option being the pat-down and metal detector.

    Tulsa started today, but airports in San Francisco, Las Vegas, Miami, Albuquerque and Salt Lake City will join the test in the next two months.

    Whitey-Tightie still rules - but be aware of checkpoint changes.
  20. bubagump

    bubagump New Member


    Damn. Is tighty whitey still safe in your opinion? Wont it show up on the backscatter or MMW?
    Do you have a link to any article announcing this? Is it going to be implemented at all the airports immediately?
    I am just desperate for some reassurance!!

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