American held for dine-and-dash
No free lunchNo free lunch

American held for dine-and-dash

Hotel guest charges NIS 15,000 birthday dinner to room, then heads off without paying bill

Dinner time (photo credit: CC-BY-SA 3.0, by Kaldari, Wikimedia Commons)
Dinner time (photo credit: CC-BY-SA 3.0, by Kaldari, Wikimedia Commons)

An American tourist was put in Israeli jail after celebrating his birthday in style and trying to take off before paying his NIS 15,000 (approx $4,000) bill.

According to a report in Maariv, the man arrived at Tel Aviv’s upscale boutique Hotel Montefiori on Wednesday and requested a room. He presented the clerk with an American passport and credit card. When the credit card was rejected, he gave details for another card, which he claimed was his father’s credit card, which was accepted.

That evening, he invited 10 close friends to celebrate his 28th birthday in the hotel restaurant. The man and his guests ran up a tab for food and drinks of approximately NIS 15,000, including tip, which the man charged to his room.

When he went to check out on Thursday morning, the hotel discovered that credit card he had used was in fact blocked and charges could not be added to it.

The hotel managers told the man to pay in cash, which he claimed not to have, and he then promised to contact his father so that the card could be unblocked, but left the hotel without paying.

After contacting the police, the hotel set up a meeting with the suspect, where he allegedly told them he had no intention of paying the bill, which he said was exorbitant.

The hotel management was displeased and detectives at the meeting quickly arrested the tourist.

During his interrogation, the man told detectives that he did not intend to deceive the hotel and that his father would pay the bill, but the police did not believe his story.

One police source told Maariv that they suspect the man had been involved in similar cases of fraud reported by various restaurants in Tel Aviv.

The tourist was remanded on Friday, and the police agreed to release him on bail. However, he was unable to make bail and spent the weekend in a jail cell.

read more: