PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) - A former Mesa Airlines worker has admitted to his role in creating fake airline IDs that were used to get free flights for himself and other people on another airline.

Hubbard Bell from Houston pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. The 32-year-old told the court after he was fired from the airline, he worked with others to gain access to the company's employees' information to book free flights on Spirit Airlines. That info included their names, dates of hire, and employee identification numbers. For himself, Bell created 34 free airline tickets for domestic flights, even though he didn't work for Mesa Airlines. He also said he helped his alleged co-conspirators make and sell phony Mesa employee ID cards for fake travelers. The crimes happened between February 2016 and November 2017.

Bell is scheduled to be sentenced in December. He faces a maximum of 20 years in prison. The other defendants in the case are expected to go to trial this spring.


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