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San Francisco Cargo Handlers Arrested

The U.S. Attorney´s office says 13 cargo handlers at San Francisco International Airport have been arrested on charges that they stole nearly $200,000 worth of computers, cameras and other goods bound for U.S. military personnel in Okinawa, Japan.

The workers are employed by Aeroground, which handles air cargo at 9 airports in North America. All 13 handlers were arraigned in Federal court in San Francisco yesterday. Authorities say there have been more than 570 reports of items missing from packages received in Okinawa by U.S. military personnel since November of 2003.

The losses were particularly severe during the holiday season. Authorities say Aeroground management has fully cooperated with the investigation. If convicted, the workers could face up to five years in prison and fines of $250,000.