“I can’t call back a plane based solely on your suspicions!”
“Agent Sanchez, as an NTSB Agent, you know all too well that that type of cancellation can only come from the FAA.” Dirkson Lin, spokesman for Trans Air, practically spit his denial, to call back Trans Air Flight 200, in our faces.
“Do you have any idea how much it costs to return a plane to the gate, disembark a hundred or more people, search the plane, refuel the plane, and reload all of the passengers? Do you have any idea of the cost?”
“If, you, Agent Sanchez, or even Agent Roberts, had called our Security Office and had made them aware of your suspicions before Trans Air left the gate, then perhaps.”
“Well can you at least confirm Elise Rivera’s employment with your airline,” asked Agent Sanchez.
“My problem with that gentlemen, is that you can’t confirm for sure whether Elise Rivera is this Rebecca Schuster you’re looking for.
“Well, can you tell us the exact nature of the work Miss Rivera does?” asked Frank.
“Again, gentlemen, you can’t even confirm whether or not she did anything at all to that plane.”
“We have reason to think she did!” Frank’s boss was beginning to get hostile as the minutes went by and Flight 200 got closer and closer to departure.
“What I can tell you, is that we absolutely do not allow our cleaning staff anywhere near the inner workings of our planes.” He said while pointing his ballpoint pen at us to emphasis his point. “And it’s never been proven that Rebecca Schuster or Lester Schuster or whatever name this person is using, had anything to do with the downing of those other planes. I only point this out because, if I’m not mistaken, your name, Agent Roberts, is on two of those crash reports as certifying that Flight 404 crashed due to weather conditions and Nations Air, both pilot error and weather related conditions.”
“Those reports were done before we realized Miss Schuster’s involvement. And as we said before, Miss Schuster was a member of the New York Police, and would have had easy access to the airport through Security. We suspect she might have used her knowledge of security practices to gain access here, also.” Agent Sanchez was doing his best to convince Mr. Lin, but I could tell he was getting no where.
“Are you insinuating that our security is lack? As I’ve said before Agent Sanchez, Miss Rivera was personally vouched for by an employee who’s been with us for at least five years. Without a warrant, I can’t allow you access to her personnel file.”
“Can you at least tell us the name and address of the employee who vouched for Miss Rivera? Perhaps we can talk with him or her,” I asked.
At that suggestion Mr. Lin stood up came around the desk and opened the door to his office. It was clear he wanted us to leave.