Luggage Looters Caught in the Act

Undercover video shows airport thieves riffling through luggage.
3:00 | 12/17/13

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Transcript for Luggage Looters Caught in the Act
It's every traveler's nightmare. Check your bags on one end but when you retrieve the items, you find precious items missing. The handy work of shady handlers or opportunistic thieves. We obtained undercover footage that will likely make any traveler cringe. You know that wave of relief you feel when you finally see your bag on the carousel? Not so fast. Just because your bag arrived doesn't mean your stuff did, too. You're looking at handlers stealing, caught on secret cameras hidden in the belly of the plane at one of the busiest airports in the united states. Watch as this handler finds a wallet. He's quite methodical in his search. Jackpot. Cash. He takes the time to count it. He checks for more. How about credit cards? He stuffs his pockets, picking the wallet clean. The video was obtained exclusively by abc news. They had a warning about some airport employees. They are hard working honest people by and large but there are people who are tempts and will conduct some criminal activity. When they do we work to find out who they are and arrest them. The three new york area airports there were nearly 600 reports of luggage theft in the last two years. Air passengers everywhere face the unseen danger of airport grinchs snatches their holiday joy. The sting you saw was set up this summer after there were complaints from passengers about items missing from their baggage. Jewelry, cash, watches, ipads and iphones. Seven workers charged with stealing thousands in valuables. It's not just new york. This handler is caught on tape searching suitcases, packing valuables in his back back. They discovered 700 items valued at $84,000. It is not just baggage handlers stealing. In phoenix, this man and his wife were convicted of driving to airports and plucking other people's luggage right off of the carousel. Look at this stash. Hundreds. Since 2003, almost 400 tsa personnel have been fired for theft, including this one exposed last year by my colleague for stealing an ipad. This is an ipad? Yeah. When tsa is screening all of this luggage they can literally look inside and see if anything is there. It's not a hit and miss. They know where to look. What can you do to protect yourself? For one, never pack valuables in your checked luggage. Cash, jewelry, electronics. Even if it's an expensive bottle of perfume. Use well worn luggage that won't be a beacon for thieves. If your carry on is going to be checked at the last minute, take the time to open the bag and remove your valuables. Santa is not the only one watching out for the grinchs. We constantly review our cctv coverage of the airport. Do you have cameras so you can monitor the workers and make sure they're not stealing? We have cameras above the jetways and other cameras that are throughout the terminals that are fed to a operational room that is monitored. You can't show me those right? No, I can't. You have to kill me if you show me? Yes, definitely. Thanks to pierre for that

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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