x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Qatari scammed out of Dh70m in bogus airline con, Abu Dhabi court told

A Qatari investor filed a lawsuit against three men who cheated him of Dh70m in a bogus project to start an airline company.

ABU DHABI //Three men scammed an investor out of €15 million (Dh70.4m) over a non-existent project five years ago, the Appeals Court heard yesterday.

The Qatari investor said the two Emiratis and a Bahraini proposed a project to start an airline company, requiring capital of €35m.

He was told his share would be 43 per cent in exchange for the €15m.

A business mediator who knew the Bahraini defendant and the plaintiff said the defendant told him he was doing a study for a project and was searching for investors.

The mediator introduced him and his two colleagues to the Qatari to present the project.

He said he was given €450,000 for his services and his role ended, but four days later he heard the plaintiff sent the money.

But about five years passed without progress, so the investor filed a lawsuit.

The three men were each sentenced to three years in jail at the Court of First Instance. The Emiratis were sentenced in their absence after fleeing.

During the appeal, one of three defence lawyers asked the investor if he knew that the project was for stocks in Europe and not for an airline company.

The Qatari replied he was only presented with the airline company project and had not heard anything about European stocks.

The Bahraini defendant asked the plaintiff if he had transferred money to his personal account.

He replied that it did not matter whose account the money was transferred into.

The court adjourned the appeal until next month.

hdajani@thenational.ae