x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Dubai court clears four men who claim they were tortured into burglary confession

The court said previous rulings prompted it to dismiss the cases, but did not make clear what those rulings were.

DUBAI // Four men who claimed they were tortured into confessing to 20 burglaries had all cases against them dismissed by the Criminal Court today.

The court said previous rulings prompted it to dismiss the cases, but did not make clear what those rulings were - nor did it clarify why the prosecution had referred the cases back to the court.

The four men last appeared in court last February, when they denied stealing items worth more than half a million dirhams.

"We were beaten and forced to confess by the police," all four defendants said loudly in the courtroom.

Prosecutors claimed that from February 2011 to March 2012 the men burgled 20 companies including Dubai Electricity and Water Authority, stealing items such as electric cables, washing machines, car batteries and air-conditioners.

"We are being framed, they are framing us in more than 70 cases including these 20 ones your honour," testified one of the men.

Policeman AM, 29, said he and a team of investigators linked two of the men to the burglaries and arrested them. One of them confessed and implicated the other two men, one of whom was then arrested at the Omani border and another in Al Rafaa after his father tipped off police.

The four men, MA, 22, MF, 23, MJ, 19 and SN, 24, are all from Pakistan.

salamir@thenational.ae