x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Illegal alcohol trader hands rival in to police

A bootlegger motivated by revenge kidnapped his competitor and handed him over to Abu Dhabi Police, hears court.

DUBAI // An illegal alcohol trader kidnapped a competitor and handed him over to Abu Dhabi Police - but the man "disappeared" from the station before he could be questioned, the Dubai Criminal Court heard today.

BS, a 40-year-old from India, ran an illegal business in which he and his employees SS, 23, JS, 33 and SJ, 31, would transport alcohol from Ajman to Abu Dhabi for sale, according to court records.

AM, a 32-year-old policeman, said that they kidnapped a man in charge of a competing illegal business on the morning of September 5 at International City in Dubai.

"They claimed that the victim was competing with [BS] so he decided to get rid of him by handing him over to Abu Dhabi Police," said the policeman.

The men drove their hostage to Al Mussaffah police station in Abu Dhabi and left him there, according to the prosecution.

MS, a 36-year-old policeman who was on duty at the station at the time, said that the man approached him but that he was unaware he had been kidnapped. He said the man - a resident of Oman - looked as if he had been physically abused, so he decided to seek medical help.

"I was about to process a physical test application and send him to hospital but the victim disappeared and when I went outside [the police station] to look for him he had left," he said.

Police were only made aware that a kidnap had taken place when MK, a 30-year-old from Lebanon, called them to report that he had witnessed it.

He said he had seen two men being chased out of his building's car park by two cars - a black vehicle and a white Honda Accord.

"The two men ran away, one towards the building and he was followed by the black car, while the other man ran towards a nearby sandlot and he was followed by the white car."

He said that he went to help the man being chased by the white car, but he saw him being forced inside the vehicle before he could do anything and decided to call the police instead. It was unclear what happened to the man being pursued by the black car.

Police arrested BS and his three employees, who are all from India, after tracking them through car rental records.

The men denied charges of unlawful capturing motivated by revenge. The case was adjourned to July 4.

wissa@thenational.ae