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Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 16 December 2018

Six guards who stole more than Dh1m from money transportation vehicle in Dubai are jailed

The six men all worked for the company they stole from

Six security guards who stole more than Dh1m from a money transportation vehicle will spend three years in jail each.

On May 6 this year, the Sri Lankan defendants, aged between 22 and 29, stole 12 bags of money containing Dh1.198m from a money transportation vehicle belonging to the company they worked for.

The men planned the heist together and stole the money when the vehicle stopped in Al Muraqqabat to collect cash.

One of the guards, who was on duty that day along with two Pakistani men, tricked the driver into opening the van claiming he had money bags that needed to be added to the van’s load. After the driver opened the door, he stole the bags of money.

“We were a team of three, two went to collect cash and I remained in the van because I’m the driver, then shortly after the two left, the Sri Lankan colleague returned and signalled me to open the van in order to put the money bags, so I did,” said the Pakistani driver.

The other Pakistani man working that day told investigators that while they were waiting to collect the money, the defendant excused himself to use the toilet.

“I had no idea that he returned to the vehicle and tricked the driver to open its door for him,” said the guard, 26.

An Emirati police lieutenant, 28, said the thief had contacted the other defendants through IMO chatting application and informed them of the time he planned to carry out the robbery. They arrived and acted as a look out.

After they stole the money, the men then took a taxi to a flat in Al Rashidiya where each one was given Dh160,000.

An Emirati police lieutenant, 28, said the thief contacted the other members of the gang using a messaging smartphone app and told them when he was planning to steal the money so they arrived and acted as look outs.

Police tracked the gang down via CCTV footage and arrested three of them on May 9 in Al Rashidiya. Three others were arrested in Al Sajaa in Sharjah the next day, he said.

The final two men remain at large and are charged with aiding and abetting the four men. They allegedly helped the men transfer some of the stolen money by giving them their IDs to use at different exchange centres in return for money. Records show that one of the two men was given Dh2,500 in exchange for his ID.

One of the four men — who was not able to wire any of the money — was found with Dh181,955 of stolen cash.

Another, aged 27, told police he wired Dh10,000 of his share after using the IDs of the two defendants at large.

Police caught him with Dh255,000 and $740 as well as other amounts in different currencies.

Two others managed to wire Dh13,000 and Dh22,000 but the rest of the amounts was found in their possession. The last two failed to wire any of their shares which were also found in their possession.

A total of Dh920,010 was retrieved by police.

At Dubai Criminal Court in July, the six men in custody admitted to a robbery charge. The other two remain at large.

On Sunday the six men were sentenced to three years in jail each.

One of the two at large was sentenced to a year in jail for aiding and abetting while the eighth defendant was found not guilty.

Those convicted, will be deported after serving their prison terms.