Catch me if you can? The man has been caught…and wait till you hear his defense.
Man Arrested For Impersonating Lufthansa Pilot
Rajan Mahbubani is a self-identified frequent flyer. The 48-year-old acquired a Lufthansa’s pilot uniform and fake ID then successfully used it to bypass airport security and secure in-flight upgrades.
But this week he was caught while pulling his routine with Air Asia at Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport (DEL). Before boarding an Air Asia flight from Delhi to Kolkata (CCU), staff telephoned the Lufthansa desk to check on whether Mahbubani really worked for Lufthansa (it’s not clear what raised suspicion).
Sanjay Bhatia, DEL’s Deputy Commissioner of Police, told CNN:
Mahbubani said that he was a frequent flier and used to dress up as a pilot to gain easy access through security, get preferential treatment from security agencies and airlines and seat upgrades. He would use the passage normally used by airline crew.
After his arrest, Mahbubani told us he used to shoot YouTube and TikTok videos on aviation and had obtained the Lufthansa fake ID card in Thailand.
Apparently, police were already on the lookout for him. Mahbubani is fond of uniforms, also likes to wear fake military uniforms, and then boasts about it on social media.
Mahbubani now faces a hefty fine and up to a year in prison. He claims it was all a big joke.
You can see his fake ID here. It looks exactly like the real thing. That’s not a surprise so much as the fact that he got his away with it for so long. Then again, Catch Me If You Can was based upon a true story. Kind of sad he was never able to use his fake ID to actually score an upgrade on Lufthansa…