UWI student on scamming charge denied bail

February 12, 2016

A University of the West Indies (UWI) student accused of scamming a United States citizen out of US$3,450 and using the money to pay his tuition, was denied bail when he appeared in the Corporate Area Resident Magistrate's Court on Monday.

Twenty-year-old Chavez Allen, a second-year actuarial science student, is charged with transporting money using access device; obtaining credit by fraud; six counts of unauthorised access to computer data; six counts of conspiracy to transport money, using access device; five counts of possession of identity information and transporting money using access device.

He pleaded not guilty to all charges.

Allegations are that, between January 2, 2015 and August 10, 2015, the accused used the credit card of a United States citizen, without authorisation, to pay his school fee. An accountant at UWI detected the fraud when the actual credit card holder reversed the transaction.

It is also alleged that Allen runs a business at UWI, employing and tutoring other students to scam.

In court, Allen's lawyer claimed his client had not defrauded anyone by using his or her credit card. He said Allen was working, online, for an overseas company, doing data entry, and had advised his employer to deposit his pay directly to the university.

As for the scamming tutorials, Allen's lawyer claimed his client runs a legitimate business, tutoring other students in actuarial science.

The investigating officer opposed bail because investigations are ongoing, implicating the accused in another scamming racket in which cell- phones are used to obtain credit card information.

Senior Resident Magistrate Judith Pusey denied bail, noting she was giving the officers enough time to complete their investigations .

Allen is to return to court on February 22.

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