x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

'Sorcerer' cheated newlywed out of Dh15,000, police say

A man is arrested on sorcery charges amid allegations he scammed several victims out of thousands of dirhams.

DUBAI // Dubai Police have arrested a "sorcerer" who cheated a newly married woman out of Dh15,000, officials said yesterday.

The man, an African Arab, was arrested last week by the Dubai Police Anti-Economic Crimes division after a sting operation.

"We have recovered numerous papers with symbols and talismans, as well as three mobile phones he used to communicate with his victims," said Lt Col Salah Bu Esaiba, the director of the division.

"We discovered that the sorcerer was approached by a large number of people and families asking him to help them earn money, help their children pass their school exams or bring good luck to them."

Lt Col Bu Esaiba said the sorcerer, who was not identified, was arrested after a report by a woman who was seeking his help in having her husband return to her.

The woman, identified only as a GCC citizen, told police she contacted the sorcerer to help her break a magic spell cast on her.

"She said that she was married for one week and then her husband ran away. She wanted to get him back," said Lt Col Bu Esaiba.

The suspect, police said, asked the woman to give him money and several items, and to perform two slaughters.

"She lost a total of Dh15,000," police said.

The woman told police she was given various talismans and incense, and told to use them in her home country.

"The woman's health rapidly deteriorated as she suffered from a fever and lack of sleep because of continuous nightmares that she was getting as a result of the spells that were cast on her by the sorcerer," Lt Col Bu Esaiba said.

After her report, investigators found the suspect and arrested him in the Muraqqabat district of Deira.

The items he used in his "magic" were sent to the Dubai Police forensics laboratory to be identified.

The man was referred to the Deira Public Prosecutor's office to face charges of embezzlement by the use of sorcery.

amustafa@thenational.ae