(Photo: Courtesy Shar-Jah Airport)
An Egyptian couple is facing child endangerment charges after putting an infant in carry-on luggage. The infant was found during an x-ray scan conducted by officials and is reported to be in good condition.
The couple arrived in the United Arab Emirates last week but was denied entry because they had no visa for the child. After being told that they would have to wait two days for the proper paperwork to be processed, the Egyptian man grew impatient and convinced his wife to put the 5-month-old in her carry-on luggage.
Security agents were stunned when they scanned the bag and discovered the baby boy inside. Thankfully he was unharmed by the radiation and is currently in the custody of the police.
"We were very surprised," officer Abdel Rahman Shama told CNN. "This is the first time we have seen something like this. Even if you are in a desperate situation, how can you put your child in a bag?"
The parents are still in the custody of UAE officials, and are going through rigorous questioning. They are accused of child endangerment and could lose custody of the child and serve time in jail if found guilty.
"This machine is very dangerous for anyone, let alone a baby in a bag, to pass through," another policeman told Gulf News. "When customs officials saw the baby inside the bag at the X-ray scanner, they were stunned."
"A case will now be raised against the mother and father. They both have visas to come to the UAE, but they have put the life of their child at risk," the official added.
The story is eerily similar to the story of a woman in the U.S. Virgin Islands who put an infant in her purse. The woman was pulled over for a routine traffic stop when a police officer heard the infant's cries and tried to locate the source. Unable to find the baby, the officer had the driver open her purse, and inside was a healthy, newborn baby girl.
The woman gave no explanation for her actions and police said they would check in to make sure that mother and daughter were doing okay.