Apple AirTag Helps Police Nab Airline Worker Turned Luggage Thief

An Apple AirTag proved instrumental in the arrest of a U.S. airline worker in connection with a series of luggage thefts — reports Insider.

Apple launched the AirTag for $29 USD ($39 CAD) last year to help customers keep track of their belongings (and more). AirTags harness the Find My network, which comprises over one billion Apple devices across the globe.

One of the stolen suitcases contained an AirTag, which relayed its location to the owner and ultimately led police to the residence of Giovanni De Luca, a 19-year-old airline subcontractor at Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport. The Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office has charged De Luca with two counts of grand theft.

According to a statement from the Sheriff’s Office, the investigation began when one traveller reported missing her suitcase, containing more than $1,600 worth of items, when she reached her destination in July.

Another traveller had reported losing their luggage, which contained over $15,000 worth of valuables, missing in a similar manner.

The July victim informed local authorities of an AirTag in her suitcase that had last activated at Mary Esther, Florida. The Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office cross-referenced the address where the AirTag was last activated with airline employees. Police ultimately made “consensual contact” with De Luca at his home, where they recovered the missing items.

De Luca admitted that he found and got rid of the AirTag in the July victim’s suitcase. However, her belongings were not recovered from his residence.

“This arrest is an example of excellent teamwork by our Airport Security Unit, our Investigators, and the Airport to find the person responsible for these thefts and make sure he is held responsible,” Sheriff Eric Aden said in the statement.

This isn’t the first time an AirTag has helped recover stolen goods (or steal them in the first place).

In June, an Ontario resident used an array of AirTags placed in his Range Rover to retrieve it after it was stolen. AirTags have even been used to track luggage lost by an airline. At this point, let’s track everything with AirTags, including our kids. Just toss one into the ol’ school backpack, right?