The son of a former Los Angeles fire chief and a Transportation Security Administration employee were arrested Oct. 16 after an alleged attempt to smuggle several pounds of marijuana on a flight from Los Angeles International Airport to Boston, according to the FBI.
Millage Peaks, 23, of Los Angeles, was charged with bribing a TSA employee in an attempt to allegedly smuggle 10 to 15 pounds of marijuana onto the plane, according to criminal complaints filed in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles. Peaks is the son of ex-LAFD Chief Millage Peaks, who retired earlier this year.
TSA employee Dianna Perez, 28, of Inglewood, was charged with accepting a bribe in connection with allowing bags containing a controlled substance to pass unimpeded through airport security, the complaint said.
After an initial appearance in U.S. District Court Oct. 17, Peaks and Perez were each released on a $20,000 bond. They are scheduled to be arraigned Nov. 14.
After an American Airlines baggage handler reported smelling marijuana emanating from one of the bags allegedly checked in by Peaks, the bags were then removed and searched by TSA personnel, according to an FBI affidavit. Airport police discovered 14 plastic bags containing approximately 10 to 15 pounds of marijuana concealed inside the luggage, the affidavit said.
The complaint alleges that Perez agreed to accept a bribe to allow Peaks’ checked luggage to bypass airport security without being screened by other TSA officers. Perez has been a TSA officer for more than seven years and is responsible for loading luggage onto x-ray machines and searching them.
The complaint additionally alleges that Peaks planned to travel to Boston to resell the marijuana which he obtained the previous day in San Francisco for $38,000. Prior to purchasing the marijuana, Peaks had arranged for Perez to help him move bags containing the drug through airport security for a fee, according to the FBI affidavit.
Peaks intended to pay Perez $500 for each bag allowed to bypass security, the complaint charges.
The complaint further alleges that Peaks told investigators that the TSA employee helped him bypass security on approximately nine previous occasions, and each time Peaks would pay $500 for each bag, amounting to approximately $5,000 to $6,000.
The investigation was conducted by the Los Angeles Airport Police division, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), and the FBI.