Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 22 May 2019

Banker who leaked details of thousands of account holders has jail term cut

Worker accepted Dh55,000 bribe to carry out crime

A banker handed a ten-year jail term after leaking the account details of 2,500 wealthy customers in exchange for a Dh55,000 bribe has had her sentence cut after a retrial.

The 28-year-old Indian disclosed the details of clients living overseas, all of whom had a balance of at least Dh500,000, to a compatriot as part of a major embezzlement plot.

The 35-year-old fraudster, and a gang of three other men from India, subsequently made seven transfers totalling Dh1.1 million from one of the accounts in December, 2015.

The bank worker was convicted of abusing her position, accepting a bribe, divulging confidential information and with aiding and abetting, during a court hearing held in her absence.

In line with UAE law, she was granted a retrial when she appeared before court.

Her jail term was reduced to three years at the latest hearing.

She must also pay a fine of Dh205,000.

The gang of fraudsters were found guilty of offering bribes, forgery, use of forged documents, embezzlement and aiding and abetting.

Each was sentenced to 10 years in prison and fined Dh150,000.

Their sentences remain unchanged.

Prosecutors said that the defendants chose the particular account because it belonged to someone who had been out of the country for a long time.

They forged several documents, including a power of attorney attributed to the bank account holder, then submitted them to Etisalat to obtain a Sim card in his name.

They used the Sim card to obtain the victim’s online banking password, then made the transfers.

The Indian victim, 61, said that he had deactivated his UAE phone while on vacation back at his home country.

In January 2016, after his return to the UAE, the victim was informed by his bank that two cheques he had issued had bounced.

He visited the bank and was informed that his account had been frozen due to suspicions over the withdrawals carried out by the gang.

Police carried out an investigation into the transfers, leading them to one of the culprits, who then confessed his crimes and revealed the identity of his accomplices.

All defendants will be deported after serving their sentences.

Updated: January 27, 2019 04:00 PM