February 2011 issue of our Mobility Matters Bulletin we noted
that our earlier prediction regarding TSA enforcement – a
prediction that TSA would turn toward a "harder"
enforcement approach – had come to fruition.
We discussed a number of press reports indicating that five
companies were under investigation, including one criminal
investigation, for potential violations of the Certified Cargo
Screening Program (CCSP). More specifically, we discussed
reports indicating that, in December 2010, TSA began an
investigation of Activair, an air cargo subsidiary of third-party
logistics operator OHL Solutions.
Now, in February 2012, following a lengthy investigation, U.S.
Attorney Joe Hogsett has announced a $1 million fine against OHL
Solutions for intentionally failing to screen cargo for
Failing to screen cargo for explosives is not only a violation
of the CCSP, but is also a violation of the 9/11 Act, which
requires 100 percent screening of all air cargo. (See
here for more on this Act).
According to investigators, Activair falsified records to cover
up the fact that hundreds of unscreened packages were being flown
out of the Indianapolis International Airport, in the holds of
passenger airplanes, during a roughly nine month period in
In addition to the fine, three of Activair's managers pled
guilty to Conspiracy to Commit Federal Reporting and Recordkeeping
Violations and now face five years in prison and $225,000
fines. Furthermore, OHL Solutions has been forced to
restructure its corporate model, including supervision over air
cargo operations, and its subsidiary, Activair, is no longer doing
business in Indianapolis.
As this case demonstrates, in the event TSA discovers negligent
or willful violations of regulatory requirements, TSA can and will
take enforcement actions, including the issuance of civil
penalties, referral for criminal prosecution, and/or withdrawal
from TSA programs.
Back in February 2011, we advised TSA-regulated companies to
focus on their CCSP compliance efforts, as even temporary removal
from the CCSP can have a devastating effect for a company committed
to screening cargo for customers. The enforcement actions
taken against OHL Solutions strongly reinforce the need for focused
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