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Complaint filed to Dublin Airport over claims security damaged a 300-year-old €282k viola

Violist Morgan Goff was travelling through Dublin Airport on 10 February when the alleged incident happened.

The 300-year-old viola
The 300-year-old viola
Image: Morgan Goff

A MAN HAS filed a formal complaint to DAA after he claimed a security staff member damaged his £250,000 (€282,000) viola.

Violist Morgan Goff, from London, claims that his 300-year-old viola was damaged during a manual security check at departures by a staff member.

“I was told that my viola would not go through the normal scanner as it was too big and would need to be manually searched and scanned,” Goff told TheJournal.ie in a statement.

He claims he was asked by security staff to empty the contents of his viola case, with the exception of the viola and two bows, before proceeding to the manual check.

Goff said he was then asked by the security staff member to open the case.

“He immediately went to grab the neck of the instrument to pull it out. I quickly stopped him and told him that it was a very valuable and old instrument,” Goff said.

“I said I would handle it and hold it for him so that he could inspect it. I asked him to be really careful due to its value,” he said.

Goff said the staff member took out a “swab wand” to examine the viola.

He claims the staff member “hit the front of the instrument hard”, which made a “sickening crunching sound” and left a visible dent.

image2 Here is the dent Goff claims was made by security staff Source: Morgan Goff

“I yelled at him. What did he think he was doing? I said to him ‘This instrument is 300 years old, worth a quarter of a million pounds and you have just dented it’,” Goff said.

Goff filled out a damages report at Dublin Airport shortly after the incident occurred.

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A spokesperson for DAA told TheJournal.ie: “Mr Goff would have been told by security screening staff, who filled out a damage report form in relation to the item, that to make a complaint he needed to contact our customer service department with the full details of the incident in question.

“This is standard procedure and we would have provided the contact details for our customer service department to Mr Goff at the time.”

DAA confirmed that Goff made contact yesterday morning to file a formal complaint in relation to the issue.

“We will now carry out a full investigation.”

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