SYDNEY: An airline baggage courier pleaded guilty in Australia on Friday to stealing samples of women s hair from their lost bags and keeping them on file.
Rodney Petersen, 30, had faced 110 charges of theft and stalking after taking strands of both head and pubic hair from the luggage of female passengers whose lost suitcases he had been charged with returning.
A search of his home and van revealed more than 87 plastic bags containing human hair, 80 of them labelled with the name of its owner, as well as several exercise books containing the details of more than 365 women.
The books contained the names and personal details of women, while police also found a small telescope in Peterson s van.
Petersen collected the samples by rifling through suitcases before delivering the lost bags to their owners, but it was unclear whether he took the samples from items such as hairbrushes or from other sources.
The errant courier was arrested when police stumbled on him looking through luggage at the back of his van as he was delivering bags to a woman at a hotel in the Melbourne area, the court heard earlier.
The courier, who worked as a sub-contractor for a firm employed by the Australian airline Qantas, pleaded guilty in Melbourne Magistrates Court to seven counts of theft and reserved his plea to seven counts of stalking.
Magistrate Donna Bakos refused to release documents containing details relating to Petersen s charges, saying it could cause distress to his victims, some of whom were personalities known to the public.
Petersen was remanded in custody until sentencing on Dec. 8.