x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 24 January 2018

German tourist fined Dh2,000 for stealing licence plate

A tourist is jailed for stealing a licence plate, which he said was a hobby.

DUBAI // A German tourist who stole a licence plate from a car at a Dubai hotel, telling police that it was his hobby, has been fined Dh2,000 by a Dubai court.

NG, 47, confessed to Jebel Ali police that he stole the plate on the morning of June 4 at the car park of the Movenpick Hotel near Ibn Battuta Mall, then placed it in his rental car. But he denied the charges last month at the Dubai Court of Misdemeanours.

The Abu Dhabi-issued plate belonged to LA, 37, an Emirati housewife who had been staying at the hotel since June 1.

She reported her front plate missing when she was checking out on the afternoon of June 4.

LA said that when she parked her Audi Q5, it had both the front and rear plates. But when she got the car from the valet, it was missing the front plate, and she told hotel management.

Records show the hotel checked footage from its surveillance cameras and provided police with printed images that clearly showed a man kneeling before the vehicle, breaking the plate loose, then carrying it away facing the cameras.

When LA called police, they checked the images and arrested NG in the hotel lobby the same day.

During prosecution investigations, NG allegedly said collecting car licence plates was his hobby, despite knowing it was illegal.