The Mail on line — An airline passenger smuggled a kitten past security checks by hiding the animal in her handbag on a flight into the UK from Greece. The incident took place in September last year, but it became public two days ago when extracts of the Civil Aviation Authority log were released after a request under the freedom of information Act.
According to the Mail report, another traveller spotted the bag moving and informed authorities at Glasgow Airport after the 2,000-mile flight.
The owner then refused to be separated from the stowaway, which had not been picked up by security checks at Heraklion Airport in Crete.
A log of the incident released by Civil Aviation Authority states: ‘Kitten had been missed by security on departure.’
The owner was separated from the four-week old kitten, which was placed in quarantine to guard against infectious diseases.
Philip Baum, editor of Aviation Security International, said: ‘While a cat is not considered a prohibited item in the same way as a weapon or narcotics it would definitely show on an X-ray machine. You have to wonder what on earth the operator was doing at the time if he didn’t see the animal going through.
‘The other possibility is that the animal did not pass through security in a bag and was found airside which has happened before.’
The incident was recorded in logs detailing disruptive passengers released under the Freedom of Information Act. The airline was not named.
Cats entering the UK require a microchip, rabies vaccination and pet passport and must enter via an approved transport company and route.
Heraklion Airport did not respond to requests for comment.
A spokesman for Renfrewshire Council confirmed an environmental health officer attended the airport.
He said. ‘The council did not ask for the kitten to be destroyed but I have no record of what happened to it. It could have been taken back to the country of origin.’