x Abu Dhabi, UAE Friday 21 July 2017

Accountant cashing in Dh500,000 attacked in pepper spray robbery, Dubai court hears

An accountant taking more than half a million dirhams to the bank was stabbed and pepper sprayed by gang who made off with the money, court hears.

DUBAI // An accountant carrying more than half a million dirhams in cash to the bank was attacked by a gang of men who stabbed him and pepper-sprayed him before stealing the money, a court heard today.

AM, 27, from India, was carrying Dh523,309 from the hypermarket where he worked when the robbery took place on October 6 last year. When he headed to his vehicle in the hypermarket's underground car park two men grabbed and restrained him, while a third man stabbed his arm holding the bag. A fourth man pepper sprayed him before the bag was snatched from his grasp and the gang ran off to their getaway vehicle.

A passerby heard the accountant's screams and rushed to help, managing to write down the licence plate of the getaway vehicle.

Police traced down the car and arrested seven men.

Under interrogation some of the men said MS was the mastermind behind the robbery and that he convinced the others, who are all low-paid workers, to take part. They had plotted the robbery since July last year after a driver at the hypermarket told them the accountant often carried large amounts of money.

The gang split the proceeds and two of them were arrested at Dubai International Airport as they tried to flee the country.

Seven Pakistani men aged between 22 and 37 were charged by the Criminal Court with robbery and assault.

Four of them confessed to robbery but denied assault, the other three denied both charges.

A medical report estimated the accountant's injury as constituting a permanent five per cent disability for the purposes of compensation.

A verdict is expected on July 16.

salamir@thenational.ae