Air Transport World

N.Y. hustlers get stung. (Port Authority of New York and New Jersey investigates unlicensed transportation services)

NEW YORK--A highly successful sting operation at JFK, Newark and LaGuardia airports made for a tough summer for hustlers, who had been giving New York's airports a black eye. The hustlers, offering unlicensed transportation to overly trustful arriving passengers, often held their victims hostage in their vehicles or prevented retrieval of luggage from the trunk until they were paid a ransom disguised as a fare.

But this year, the Port Authority of N.Y./N.J. blanketed the airports' arrival areas with teams of plainclothes police posing as tourists. When a hustler solicited one of the "victims," a summons was issued for him or her to appear in the local criminal court. Fines could be $100 or more. …

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