An employee of Delta Air Lines allegedly stole enough travel vouchers to cost Delta Air Lines greater than $52,000.00 in losses in order to repay a $1,000.00 debt to a friend, who then sold the vouchers — valued between $200.00 and $1,000.00 — for half price on the black market.
Alicia Parris — who worked as a part-time customer service agent for Delta Air Lines at Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport — was the subject of a federal investigation after officials from Delta Air Lines received complaints about the alleged reassignment of travel vouchers to other people without the permission of customers whose accounts had been unlawfully accessed and changed.
As a result of that federal investigation, Parris and her friend Michael Thomas were charged with access device fraud and wire fraud and could each face incarceration of up to 20 years.
Although a passenger who was interviewed by a federal agent was not charged for traveling using those stolen vouchers, this is a good reminder that it is risky to use instruments for travel when uncertain about their origin or the method in which they were obtained. While the instruments to be used for travel may be purchased at significantly less cost than their original value, the purchaser risks losing what was paid on the instrument to be used for travel if it was acquired from an illegitimate broker or other questionable seller — and could also risk experiencing potential legal issues.
FlyerTalk member MSPeconomist posted that “the story seems strange. Supposedly she stole the vouchers to repay a friend to whom she only owed $1000, yet DL lost about $50,000 in the process, with the friend reselling the vouchers for half of their value. So she gave him vouchers for which he got $25,000 even though she only owed him $1000. That’s quite a rate of interest on her loan.”
Is there more to this story than what is already known?