x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Petrol pumpers 'hacked into system'

Petrol station attendants are accused of falsifying purchase-card transactions.

DUBAI // Four petrol station workers filled their pockets after filling petrol tanks by hacking into the "select card" payment system, a court has heard.

Three Indians - MR, 23; MH, 23; and MN, 27 - and a Nepalese, SK, 25, uncovered a glitch in the payment system that allowed them to steal Dh826, the Dubai Criminal Court of First Instance was told.

The men work for Emirates National Oil Company's (Enoc's) Eppco petrol stations.

They allegedly swiped the cards after customers filled their tanks, but reset the machine to erase the record of the bill and entered an amount higher than the original.

Prosecutors said the men billed more than Dh1,500 on a maximum of Dh700 worth of petrol, allowing them to receive a higher commission at the end of the month.

The alleged scheme was uncovered after an officer in charge of the Dubai Police motor pool found there were discrepancies between the amounts billed and the mileage on the cars.

"We then cross referenced all the records provided by Enoc and each car's on-board computer system, and discovered that 13 police cars registered in their records have not been matched to our records," said Chief Warrant Officer Ali Al Muhairi.

"We then conducted our investigations and MH confessed to the crime to us."

The four men were charged as public officials because the company is owned by the Dubai Government, meaning they could face 10 years in jail if convicted.The case was adjourned to January 31.

amustafa@thenational.ae