Pilot Who Scammed Air Canada Out of $30,000 in Free Flights Forced to Pay It All Back
A Cathay Pacific pilot has been found guilty of scamming Air Canada out of almost $30,000 in free flights. A Canadian court ordered last month that he must pay back full restitution and complete 20 hours of community service.
From March through July 2013, Marc Anthony Tacchi, a pilot for Cathay Dragon, used a friend to gain fraudulent codes to redeem free flights on Air Canada, according to court documents. Tacchi is a Canadian citizen but a permanent resident of Hong Kong. He made money selling these free flights to acquaintances for a “service fee.”
Tacchi’s friend was reportedly part of a mystery shopper program with Sensors Quality Management Inc. Through the program, he could book flights and receive a full or partial refund on flights for completing a review afterwards. He allegedly shared his promotional code with Tacchi, who booked free flights but did not complete any reviews.
With the promotional code, Tacchi booked four trips for himself and his family over 13 different legs of flights, including some in first class. He also accrued more than $500 in frequent flier miles from these bookings. He must pay Air Canada back a full restitution of $29,135.08 (CAD$36,551.27).
"The amount involved in these frauds is not insubstantial,” the judge wrote in the sentence. “The sole motivation for these offenses was greed.”