Security cameras and attentive staff derailed a scheme by a British tourist to charge a Turkish hotel for his lost passport and cash.
The 28-year-old, Craig M., checked in to a hotel in Antalya, a Mediterranean city popular with holidaymakers a week ago. On Monday, he told the staff that he lost his passport and 4,500 pounds that he was keeping in a safe at the hotel. The staff found the passport in the garden of the hotel but when they failed to find the money, they were obliged to reach a settlement with the tourist. However, when they checked the security cameras, they discovered that the British national deliberately dropped his passport and even pushed it to an obscure place with his foot to make it difficult to find.
When confronted by the staff and police, he confessed that he sought to have compensation for the loss as he "needed money to cover his dental treatment fees." The hotel administration said they filed a criminal complaint against the tourist. Craig M. was released after he gave a statement to Turkish police. The hotel's manager, Fatih Caner, told İhlas News Agency that they encountered such cases commonly but investigations often revealed "schemes of malicious hotel guests."
An unfortunate trend among British vacationers seeking compensation by falsifying sickness and injury or thefts while staying at hotels in Turkey has prompted hoteliers to come up with ways to defend themselves. A number of hotels along Turkey's Aegean and Mediterranean coasts that are popular among Britons have set up claims departments for meticulous probes of allegations by tourists. False sickness or injury claims are not exclusive to British tourists, but experts say legal loopholes in Britain facilitate pursuing false sickness or injury claims. The increase in false claims was also brought to the attention of the U.K. Foreign Office, and it has included details in its travel advice for Turkey. "You should only consider pursuing a complaint or claim if you have genuinely suffered from injury or illness. If you make a false or fraudulent claim, you may face legal proceedings in the U.K. or Turkey," the travel advice on the body's website reads.