Notorious 'Piggyback Bandit' Detained for Massaging 14-Year-Old Boy's Back at Airport: Police

Police were alerted to Sherwin Shayegan's alleged behavior by an airline employee

Sherwin ShayeganCredit: Port Authority Police
Photo: Port Authority Police

On Friday, authorities in New Jersey arrested a 34-year-old Washington man at Newark Liberty International Airport, alleging he massaged the back of a teenage boy and then handed the youth an envelope containing cash and an inappropriate note.

Sherwin Shayegan, 34, was charged with endangering the welfare of a child, PEOPLE confirms with Port Authority of New York and New Jersey officials. Shayegan has not entered a plea to the charge against him, and remains in police custody on an unspecified amount of bail.

Shayegan, who has made headlines nationwide as the so-called “Piggyback Bandit,” allegedly gave an unsolicited and unwanted back massage to a 14-year-old boy.

The offense allegedly occurred as the child was waiting near a luggage carousel.

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After the unwanted touching, Shayegan allegedly gave the boy an envelope containing an undisclosed amount of cash and a note: “This is money for letting me give you a massage. Thank you.”

According to investigators, the note contained additional comments of a sexually suggestive nature. Police are not detailing the rest of the alleged note.

Police were alerted to Shayegan’s alleged behavior by an airline employee, a Port Authority official confirms to PEOPLE.

He was tracked to his hotel where he was detained and searched. Police allegedly found other envelopes in his pockets. Those, too, contained notes and money, PEOPLE learns.

The names of different airports were allegedly written on the envelopes, according to authorities.

This is not the first time Shayegan has attracted attention for his allegedly inappropriate behavior.

According to numerous news reports, the man from Bothell in Washington State is infamous for attending high school athletic events, where he allegedly seeks piggyback rides from the players.

Reports claim he has been banned from sporting events at high schools in five states, including Oregon and North Dakota.

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According to NBC in Washington D.C., he was convicted of assault and battery in 2014 for grabbing a player by the arm and trying to drag him into a locker room.

Shayegan’s Facebook page lists “Piggyback Rides” as an interest.

His mother told a reporter her son has Asperger’s syndrome and is compulsively reliving his years as a high school sports team manager.

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