Briton charged with cheap air ticket scam

PATONG: British national Jonathan Duncan, 24, was arrested today and charged with fraud after allegedly selling what he said were cheap air tickets to foreign tourists.

He was arrested at 3:30 pm in Room 112 of the Patong Grand View Hotel, where police also seized a laptop computer as evidence.

Pol Lt Col Boonlert Onklang said at Kathu Police Station that Duncan had been charged with cheating a Swedish man out of 95,000 baht, an offense which carries a maximum punishment of three years in jail.

Col Boonlert said that Duncan came to Thailand last year as a tourist. He is accused of telling foreigners wanting cheap air tickets that he could sell them to anyone interested, but that they would have to pay cash.

Using the tickets he provided, the people who bought them were able to travel one way but could not return, because people whose credit cards had been used to pay for them had notified the card companies that their cards had been used fraudulently, and the cards were cancelled.

The airlines were unaware of the name of the person who had sold the tickets, Col Boonlert added.

He said that the police have the names of people and two airlines allegedly cheated by Duncan.

Another victim of the alleged scam told the Gazette, “A friend told me that this guy was selling cheap tickets, so I bought two open returns to Gothenburg in Sweden. These were first class tickets at an economy price of around 65,000 baht each.”

He intended to use one immediately and the other later, he said. Using the first ticket he flew to Sweden in March, but when he wanted to return he was told that the ticket was not valid. He had to buy a new ticket in order to return to Phuket.

Col Boonlert said, “We want to warn tourists that it is impossible to get cheap air tickets. So they should not believe anybody who acts in this manner.”

Duncan will appear in court tomorrow, the colonel said.

Phuket News

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