Airline Cathay Pacific says its staff has been stealing 'hundreds of millions' of dollars worth of mini ice cream pots, wet wipes, and company-branded pens

Cathay Pacific Airways has vowed to conduct flight inspections after a report accused the airline’s staff of stealing supplies – including wet wipes, cutlery, champagne, pots of Haagen-Dazs ice cream, and company-branded pens – from planes.

Company and cabin crew sources from the Hong Kong carrier told the South China Morning Post that stolen items have cost Cathay Pacific “untold hundreds of millions” over the years.

The paper said six employees were placed under investigation and awaiting disciplinary action on Saturday after security teams spot checked them at Hong Kong International Airport.

Company sources told the paper that staff were emailed earlier this year about having a “zero tolerance” for removing things from planes.

Ed Higgs, general manager of in-flight services, said in the memo that staff should only take crew-designated catering, including water, fruit, and sandwiches.

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“If anyone removes company property, irrespective of the value or if you believe it will be thrown away, you will be subject to discipline which may include termination,” Higgs said.

Cathay Pacific CEO Rupert Hogg said it might not only be cabin crews who are taking items.

“We are losing, I don’t know, wine or things like that from aircraft or somewhere in the supply chain,” he told BBC Radio 4’s “Today” program.

Cathay Pacific told the South China Morning Post that random inspections will be carried out in the future.

“In view of an increasing number of reported losses of company property, we have informed our cabin crew that random inspections will be carried out,” Cathay said in an emailed statement to the paper. “We are dealing with cases in a fair and reasonable manner in accordance with standard internal procedure.”

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