A 34-year-old Malaysian man was arrested at the Hong Kong International Airport on Tuesday night after he bought duty-free goods using a forged credit card aboard a flight from Kuala Lumpur.
The suspect, who claimed to be an automobile repair worker, purchased two Montblanc pens worth HK$6,500 on the flight to Taipei via Hong Kong, hk01.com reports.
He was arrested by members of the Commercial Crime Bureau at Chek Lap Kok airport around 10 p.m. Tuesday.
Police officers found 12 credit cards in his possession, all of which were later confirmed to be fake.
He will be charged with possession and use of forged documents.
According to police intelligence, a Malaysian criminal syndicate has been using forged credit cards for inflight purchases since six months ago, targeting mostly short-haul flights.
The gang hires people to make duty-free purchases during flights. For their efforts, they receive 10 percent of the value of the goods they have purchased with the fake credit cards.
Police said they are working with airlines and card-issuing banks to explore ways to prevent such crimes, while hunting down members of the syndicate.
So far investigation showed that no Hong Kong residents were involved in the gang’s criminal activities.
Under the law, any person found guilty of possession or use of forged documents or tools that can create such documents faces a prison term of up to 14 years.
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