A case against a flight attendant accused of filming minors in the plane’s toilet

A case against a flight attendant accused of filming minors in the plane’s toilet

A case against a flight attendant accused of filming minors in the plane's toilet

Thompson faces charges, including one count of attempted sexual exploitation of children.

New Delhi:

A 36-year-old American flight attendant arrested on charges of recording minors in aircraft restrooms, and the airline that employed him, are facing legal action from the family of one of the victims.

Flight attendant Estes Carter Thompson III was arrested on January 18 after accusations that he secretly recorded several young girls during flights, leading to major legal ramifications for American Airlines. The initial charges stem from an incident in September, in which a 14-year-old girl discovered an iPhone mounted on a toilet during a flight from Charlotte, North Carolina, to Boston. Later, the girl’s family filed a lawsuit against the airline.

A federal investigation has since revealed even more disturbing details. According to the report, four previous victims, including a 9-year-old girl from Texas, have been identified in connection with Thompson’s alleged actions. The 9-year-old’s parents filed a lawsuit alleging that Thompson recorded their child during a January 2023 trip to Los Angeles, where the family was headed to Disney World and a gymnastics meet.

The FBI reportedly recovered explicit photos from Thompson’s iCloud account, allegedly showing the face, buttocks and genitals of the 9-year-old victim. The report added that the effects of the accident left the young victim suffering from fear and anxiety.

Thompson faces serious charges, including one count of attempted sexual exploitation of a child and one count of possession of child pornography depicting a prepubescent minor, particularly in connection with the case involving the 14-year-old victim.

During the flight, Thompson allegedly redirected the 14-year-old victim to the first-class bathroom, claiming that a toilet seat was malfunctioning in the nearby lavatory. This redirection led to the discovery of red stickers on the toilet seat lid printed with the words “catering equipment inoperable” and “removed from service.” The girl took a photo of an iPhone crudely mounted on the seat with its flashlight turned on, which became pivotal in exposing the hidden camera.

The subsequent confrontation between the girl’s father and Thompson unfolded as the flight approached Boston, when authorities found 11 additional posters in the toilet. Thompson then locked himself in the bathroom with his phone, raising suspicions of possible tampering with evidence.

Authorities searching Thompson’s iCloud account uncovered four additional instances between January and August 2023, in which he allegedly recorded underage girls ages 7, 9, 11, and 14 years old. Officials also discovered hundreds of AI-generated images of child pornography stored on Thompson’s iCloud account.

(Tags for translation)Estes Carter Thompson III

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