A couple who used the confusion during the Asiana Airlines plane crash at San Francisco International Airport last summer as an opportunity to steal luggage from diverted passengers was sentenced to jail today, San Mateo County District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe said.
Sean Crudup, 44, then a customer service representative for United Airlines, was caught on surveillance video handing luggage off to his fiancée, 32-year-old Raychas Thomas, and another woman on July 8, 2013.
The luggage belonged to customers diverted away from SFO because of the July 6 plane crash, in which three Chinese schoolgirls were killed and 180 passengers and crewmembers were injured. It forced the closure of an SFO runway for nearly a week.
The luggage Crudup and Thomas stole contained valuable clothes that the couple sold to a Nordstrom store in Pleasanton for about $5,000, according to the district attorney’s office.
They were arrested July 25 as Thomas attempted to board a flight to Hawaii and some of the stolen items were later located in their Richmond home.
The defendants pleaded no contest to felony grand theft and felony possession of stolen property in March under the condition that they would not go to prison and would spend less than a year in county jail, according to the district attorney’s office.
Judge Jonathan Karesh sentenced Crudup today to nine months in jail while Thomas was sentenced to six months in jail, Wagstaffe said. Each defendant was also sentenced to three years of probation and they have to pay about $5,800 in restitution to Nordstrom.
Thomas will begin her jail term in July and Crudup must surrender in December, Wagstaffe said.
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