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Man Who Scammed Thousands in Airline Tickets Is Sentenced

Boarding pass

Flyer that scammed airlines for “free” tickets will spend six months in prison on wire fraud charges.

A frequent flyer that sold “free” airline tickets will spend the next six months in prison, with an additional six months on home arrest and $91,000 in restitution repayments to his victims: several American airlines. The Associated Press reports 38-year-old Gilbert Myers, Jr. will serve his prison sentence after pleading guilty to federal wire fraud charges at the beginning of the year.

According to the Department of Justice, Myers would pose as an airline employee in order to access free or discounted “non-revenue” seats granted to legitimate airline employees. In turn, Myers would charge his customers $2,000 for access to a year of illegitimate flights, booking the non-revenue seats in his customer’s names. Furthermore, federal attorneys claim Myers would coach customers on how to dress and act in order to prevent suspicion from the cabin crew.

Myers was ultimately discovered by JetBlue Airlines, who became suspicious of Myers’ booking activities. A spokesperson for the airline told the AP once they discovered the activity, they turned over their records to the FBI for investigation.

Myers’ was originally arrested by the FBI in 2014 on charges of mail fraud, after meeting with an undercover agent. While the federal indictment named a number of incidents involving JetBlue throughout 2012 and 2013, federal attorneys claim that the would-be travel agent also made fraudulent bookings with other airlines. In his plea, Myers admitted to arranging non-revenue bookings on multiple airlines, including AirTran Airways, Spirit Airlines and United Airlines.

While the investigation was completed by the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force, federal attorneys claim the public was never at risk. All of the flyers utilizing tickets arranged by Myers were still subject to standard screening by the Transportation Security Administration.

[Photo: iStock]

Comments are Closed.
bigwings8 May 21, 2015

I once sat next to a person who had "purchased" a non-rev ticket from someone.

cestmoi123 May 20, 2015

"So Free Non-Revenue Standby tickets are now worth $92,000" If the passengers had actually bought the seats, could easily have been $92k worth.

amanuensis May 20, 2015

Is anything being done to also go after those who purchased his tickets? The purchasers must have known that they were engaged in fraud by so doing.

UncleDude May 20, 2015

So Free Non-Revenue Standby tickets are now worth $92,000