Fraudster jailed again after release

A SRI Lankan hoping to leave Singapore last night after serving 21/2 months in prison for credit card fraud, has been carted back to jail to serve another 31/2 months.

Payagala Kumar Fernando, 21, was released from prison on Monday and held in special detention by the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority, while the prosecution awaited the result of its High Court appeal against what it felt was an inadequate sentence.

Appeals court judge V.K. Rajah agreed, noting that credit card fraud damages Singapore’s standing as a financial and aviation hub and had to be dealt with severely.

In November last year, he had found a credit card below a seat on the flight from Auckland to Singapore. Instead of returning it to the owner – a Dutch woman seated next to him – he kept it.

While in transit to board a connecting flight to Colombo, he used the credit card to buy a laptop , a mobile phone and a watch. An hour later, he tried to buy a bracelet, but by then the card had been blocked.

Fernando was arrested before he could board his flight. – The Straits Times/Asia News Network

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