Boarding Pass Arrest: Nigerian Who Slipped by Airport Security a 'Storyteller'

Nigerian man breaches JFK Airport security with day-old boarding pass.
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The arrested foreign national who allegedly flew from New York to Los Angeles last week with a stolen boarding pass and ID card is a self-proclaimed "storyteller, strategist and designer who is passionate about reaching the world for Jesus," according to one of the many websites with which he is affiliated.

Olajide Oluwaseun Noibi, 24, a Nigerian-born man who was found with the stolen ID and up to 10 old boarding passes containing various names, was arrested Wednesday after attempting to board a flight from Los Angeles to Atlanta; five days after passing through layers of airport security at New York's JFK airport to board a plane with a day-old boarding pass, federal authorities said.

Also known as Seun Noibi, the man claims to have an office on Chicago's southwest side and to be a frequent air traveler in comments that are posted under his various identities. He also says he is affiliated with the University of Michigan.

In one post on a social media website, Noibi comments about his plans to travel and his commitment to God.

"3 days, 3 cities, Chicago, Detroit and NOw i can spy with my little eye New york city from this Sheraton at Liberty Int'l Airport in NJ," he said. "When i told God to use me i didn't know he'll take me serious. Here I am. Use more of me. Meetings right into my birthday on sunday and then back in las gidi...for the Diko and Friends in Concert and Album Launch. It can only be God."

Noibi is also reportedly the founder of the "Unleash Abel Institute," said to be located in Chicago. The organization claims to have been "introducing students (8-12th graders and college bound) to professional careers in business, technology, and the sciences."

He also is listed as a principal executive of Unleash Media Inc. and Unleash 9JA, described as "a movement of independent thinkers, artist, musicians and filmmakers propagating the african experience," according to one website.

Noibi was charged with being a stowaway aboard an aircraft, according to FBI Special Agent Kevin R. Hogg. He is being held at a Los Angeles Metropolitan Detention Center and is expected to be in court Friday.

Noibi allegedly managed to get through every layer of security with a fake ID and numerous boarding passes, at least one of which came from another passenger's pocket.

The arrest came after Noibi allegedly boarded a plane Saturday under similar circumstances at JFK and travel to Los Angeles. Noibi boarded Virgin America flight 415 at JFK bound for L.A., according to an FBI affidavit.

Virgin Atlantic confirmed in a statement to ABC News that Noibi was allowed to board at the gate with a boarding pass for a flight on a different date, and that its agent "may have missed an alert when the passenger presented a boarding pass from an earlier flight."

"It's the human factor that's involved in everything," said Joseph Morris, a retired Port Authority of New York and New Jersey police officer and former security director at JFK Airport. "We can have the best technology. You can have the best processes and plans, but again it comes down to the human factor and human error.

He was found on the plane after it had taken off and was in flight, in a seat in the aircraft's "main cabin select" area. When asked for his boarding pass, Noibi produced a boarding pass and ticket for a Friday flight that was not in his name, authorities said.

On that pass was the name of a man with the initials M.D. After tracking down and interviewing him, the FBI learned that M.D. had lost his home-printed boarding pass from his back pocket, which had been folded into fourths, once he arrived at JFK via subway Friday, officials said. Once he discovered it missing, he obtained a new boarding pass from a ticket kiosk and boarded flight 413.

On flight 415 Saturday -- the day after M.D.'s flight had already taken off -- a similarly folded home-printed boarding pass with M.D.'s name on it was found on Noibi, officials said.

The crew member alerted the captain, who then spoke to local authorities from the flight deck, according to Virgin Atlantic. Law enforcement officers met the aircraft when it landed.

Man Eludes TSA With Fake ID, Boarding Pass

It is unclear how Noibi managed to get through security at both airports, and whether he left the L.A. airport once flight 415 landed last week and when he attempted to board Delta Airlines flight 46 to Atlanta Wednesday, although he claims to have cleared security.

"Noibi … said that he spent the night of June 28, 2011 at LAX Gate 51B, which I know is in the secure portion of the airport," agent Hogg said in the affidavit. "Noibi claimed he was able to go through passenger screening by obtaining a seat pass and displaying his University of Michigan identification and a police report that his passport had been stolen."

Hogg was at the Los Angeles airport with tactical Flight Officer Edward Becerril Wednesday when Noibi approach a Delta Airlines departure gate counter, according to the affidavit. Becerril overheard Noibi respond that he had missed his flight the day before, and that "they" told him he could just go to the gate, according to the affidavit. The Delta agent told Noibi "no" twice, and Noibi kept trying to hand her the boarding pass.

Hogg and Becerril then approached Noibi and said that when they searched his bags, they found more than 10 boarding passes in various individual's names.

Virgin Atlantic said it takes security matters seriously and is reviewing training methods to try to avoid this kind of incident in the future.

Meanwhile, the Transportation Security Administration said it "cannot comment on the specifics of the case given the ongoing FBI investigation."

Generally speaking, though, the TSA said in its statement, "Every passenger that passes through security checkpoints is subject to many layers of security including thorough physical screening at the checkpoint. TSA's review of this matter indicates that the passenger went through screening.

"It is important to note that this passenger was subject to the same physical screening at the checkpoint as other passengers."

A spokesman for Virgin America said the airline doesn't comment on security issues.

It is unclear why Noibi was arrested Wednesday and not when he was discovered last week as a stowaway on Flight 415.

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