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Hawaii island man arrested in alleged Internet ticket scam

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Hawaii County police on Tuesday arrested a 19-year-old Puna man who allegedly scammed four mainland victims on the Internet by offering tickets.

Police said four mainlanders responded to a Craigslist post for tickets to the sold-out Coachella Music Festival being held this weekend in Indio, Calif.

The purported ticket seller told victims to wire the money to him, and he would send them festival passes and wristbands, but they never received any.

Police teamed up with an investigator from the Office of Consumer Protection, who posed as a buyer who wanted three sets of passes and wristbands. The "buyer" and the seller agreed upon a control number and password to use when the seller claimed the money, police said.

When the Puna man went to a Hilo Western Union office Tuesday and used the number and password to claim $900, police arrested him on suspicion of attempted theft and use of a computer in the commission of a separate crime.

Police are asking for other victims of this alleged fraud to contact Detective Derek Morimoto by phone at 961-2380 or by e-mail at dmorimoto@co.hawaii.hi.us Anonymous tipsters may call CrimeStoppers at 961-8300 or 329-8181.

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