Pretend pilot busted for impersonating Lufthansa crew — taking free flights

Nov 22, 2019

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We’re all about the free flights here at TPG U.K., but sometimes others take it to a whole new level. This story is so absurd we couldn’t make this up if we tried. As first reported by The Times of India, a man attempted to board an AirAsia flight in Delhi, claiming he was a Lufthansa captain, in order to fly for free.

The man, identified as Rajan Mahbubani, 48, was wearing a pilot’s uniform from Lufthansa and also carried an ID, though when staff attempted to verify his claim he was caught red-handed.

A swiftly dispatched team from Lufthansa’s staff at the airport confronted him and he crumbled, admitting that he’d bought the ID in Bangkok six months earlier and had been using it ever since to game his way onto flights without paying. He also stated that he’d previously used the fake pilot ID several times.

The deputy chief of police at the Delhi airport, Sanjay Bhatia, was quoted in the Times of India as saying that “there are pictures in his phone of him posing as an Army colonel” and that he had posted videos to TikTok “wearing different uniforms.”

His arrest shouldn’t have come as a surprise, as he allegedly bragged about his exploits on social media, even photographing himself in different uniforms and attempting to impress friends and family. He’d also evidently leveraged his loophole in order to score free seat upgrades and priority boarding.

Feature photo by Marcio Rodrigo Machado/S3studio/Getty Images.

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