DUBAI: Dubai police busted a criminal network that targeted Emirates airlines, using fraudulent credit cards to book tickets.
Five Pakistani men allegedly booked and sold tickets of Emirates airline using credit cards that belonged to residents of the USA and Australia, causing the carrier to lose Dh130,426, Arab media reported on Monday.
The Dubai prosecution accused the men for the fraudulent electronic booking and reservation of 43 tickets on Emirates, on or before May 19.
Police officials involved with the investigation said that one of the accused confessed to being part of a criminal network specializing in booking air tickets using credit cards that belong to other people.
The five are also accused of using the air tickets with their knowledge of the transaction being fraudulent, by submitting them to an employee of the Emirates.
The prosecution also accused them of swindling the carrier of Dh130,426, the value of the air tickets, that two of them used to travel between Dubai and Karachi.
Ali Rida, the Iranian safety and security officer with Emirates, testified that the accused purchased air tickets using credit cards that belonged to residents of the US and Australia. They also called the Emirates Communication Centre to book tickets on the Dubai-Karachi route. Forty-three tickets were used between Dubai and Karachi.
“In most of the cases they left in the morning and returned the same day evening. The carrier lost Dh130,426,” he testified. The carrier received complaints from different banks and the issue was investigated.
The police then set up a trap for the accused. Corporal Abdullah Obaid testified: “One of the accused expressed a readiness to issue me air tickets for a very good price. He actually issued me five air tickets which were deposited with the Force Economic Crimes Department,” he testified.
Major Khalid Aref testified that he then arrested four of the accused, and one who confessed to travelling more than 20 times on Emirates, claimed he worked for the other accused.
The police also confiscated a number of computers and mobile phones. The accused have denied the accusation and their case will be heard by the court on October 16.