x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Ex-employee stripped boss naked and stole Dh600,000, Dubai court hears

Man stripped his boss before taking pictures of him naked and stealing Dh600,000 from him, hears court.

DUBAI // A disgruntled former employee tricked his way into his boss's hotel room before tying him up, taking pictures of him naked and stealing more than Dh600,000, a court heard today.

The 48-year-old Emirati boss OS, told prosecutors that he hired MA, a 22-year-old from Iran, to work at a shop he owned in Abu Dhabi.

He appointed the Iranian in October, but the worker's residency application was denied, so the boss paid him Dh15,000 as compensation for wasting his time.

"He kept calling me to thank me and to chat with me from time to time," said the boss.

In April the worker called the boss to tell him he was leaving the country as he had been offered a job elsewhere, and asked to meet before he left.

"I told him I was coming to Dubai in the next few days and would call him so that we could meet," said the boss.

On April 28 the boss called his former employee and invited him to the Address Hotel where he was staying and ordered lunch to be delivered to his room.

After welcoming the worker in, the boss went to use the bathroom. While there he heard the door open and presumed it was room service.

Instead it was HA, a 20-year-old Iranian student, who helped the former employee to break down the toilet door and assault the boss with knives, cutting both his hands in the process.

They tied him up with cables and threatened to kill him before ripping his clothes off and taking photographs of him naked. They said they would make the pictures public if he did not give them money.

The boss agreed to give the two men Dh13,000 in cash that he had on his person, as well as his ATM card and its pincode. The student then left the room and used the card to withdraw a further Dh5,000.

"He checked the balance in my account and found there was Dh700,000 so they ordered me to write them a cheque for the entire amount," said the boss. "But I told them I had financial responsibilities, so they asked for Dh600,000 instead."

The student then left the room once more to cash the cheque. When the bank called the boss for his assent, he was forced to approve the procedure.

The two men kept guard over the boss until 8am the next morning, when they tied him to the bed and took away his mobile phone. They also fed him seven capsules of an unknown substance. "I kept them inside my mouth and did not swallow them," he said to prosecutors.

The two men then fled. The boss shook his legs until the cable around them became loose. He then used his feet to drag a nearby knife to within reach of his hands and cut the rest of the cable.

By the time he had finally freed himself his two assailants had been gone for about four hours. He then reported his ordeal to police.

Prosecutors said that when officers arrested the two men there were photographs of the naked boss on their mobile phones. The police also recovered nearly Dh500,000.

The two men face multiple charges including locking up a person against his will with the use of weapons, sexual assault, threatening to kill and scandalise, robbery and assault with knives.

Neither was able to enter a plea in court because there was no translator. The next hearing was scheduled for September 23 to appoint a lawyer for the two men.

salamir@thenational.ae