MADURAI: A Coimbatore-based man blessed with a silver tongue, who vanished from star hotels after enjoying luxurious comfort and sumptuous food, was arrested in Madurai on Thursday. The 39-year old accused Pugazhenthi would allegedly check into luxury hotels in Coimbatore, Salem and Madurai pretending to be a businessman under assumed names. He would impress the receptionists by flaunting his command over the English language.
“He would walk into the hotel foyer and demand for the most expensive room or suite. If the receptionist asks for an identity card, he would hand over forged voter identity card. Pugazhenthi would then check into his room and place orders for the finest wine and food,” said Vetri Selvan, Crime Inspector of SS Colony police station in Madurai.
Between May 18 and May 21 he had stayed in a leading hotel in Madurai. “When his food bills were unsettled the front office staff had asked him to pay up. But he won their confidence by claiming that he had run out of cash and his friend would arrive soon to settle the money,” Selvan said. On May 21, he hired a cab through the hotel and took a tour of the temple town. “At one point, he asked the car driver to wait for him near Periyar bus stand and vanished,” the Inspector added. Two days later Pugazhenthi tried to talk his way through to a luxury suite in another hotel. “But the staff there grew suspicious about his behaviour and alerted the police,” a source said.
During questioning, Pugazhenthi allegedly confessed that he had conned hotels in Coimbatore and Salem also in similar fashion. The accused has been remanded in judicial custody.