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Two United Airlines employees charged with stealing marijuana from checked luggage

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Two United Airlines employees have been arrested and charged with stealing marijuana from checked luggage at San Francisco International Airport as part of a larger drug distribution operation, according to the FBI.

Joel Lamont Dunn and Adrian Webb, who were employed by United as ramp cargo agents, were charged on June 9 with conspiring to distribute a controlled substance, according to the FBI’s criminal complaint. Starting in 2020, Dunn and Webb oversaw an operation where other workers were paid $2,000 or more in cash each shift — or up to $10,000 a week — to steal large quantities of marijuana from checked luggage.

The scheme was uncovered when Dunn and Webb reported to police on June 8, 2021, that they were robbed at gunpoint in the airport parking lot, according to the FBI complaint. They did not report to police that any marijuana had been stolen from them.

Video surveillance footage from before and after the robbery showed the two men and other employees carrying 15- to 20-gallon black trash bags out of the secure area of the airport, the FBI complaint says. The video also shows Webb carrying a black trash bag, walking through the parking garage, heading toward his vehicle.

Subsequent video footage from October 2022 showed the two men engaged in similar activity, taking bags of unknown contents from the secured area of the airport to their personal vehicles, according to the FBI. Contacted by law enforcement, one of the men initially denied that the contents belong to them but later recanted.

A search warrant revealed that a black trash bag and two boxes contained multiple vacuumed sealed bags of what lab testing confirmed was approximately 30 pounds of marijuana, the FBI said. At least five people were involved in the operation, according to the complaint, but so far only Dunn and Webb have been charged.

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