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Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 20 September 2018

Expats ‘rented luxury hire cars then changed VIN numbers in bid to ship them overseas’

Three Jordanians and a Tunisian are accused of being involved in the scam to ship a Nissan Patrol, a Lexus and Mercedes abroad.

DUBAI // Three people were involved in an embezzlement where the chassis numbers of three rented luxury vehicles were changed so they could be shipped overseas, a court has heard.

Dubai Criminal Court heard on Tuesday that the three Jordanians and a Tunisian altered the numbers on a 2016 Nissan Patrol, a 2016 Lexus and a 2015 Mercedes, and used forged documents as they tried to ship the cars abroad.

An employee at a shipping company in Al Qusais accidentally discovered that the chassis numbers near the front tyres of all three cars were different from those on the documents and windscreens.

“Two men came to me with the cars and the documents. When I discovered the changes in the numbers I contacted my boss, who directed me to call police,” an employee at Speed Shipping Company said.

“CID officers arrived and double-checked, then discovered alterations made to the numbers and documents.”

The employee was told to contact the two Jordanian men who gave him the documents, Jordanians aged 53 and 35. One of them went to the office and was apprehended by police on May 3 last year but it appeared that the other man had left the country, the court heard.

The Tunisian man rented the three vehicles and racked up more than Dh90,000 in unpaid fees.

“We tracked down the documents and found out they were issued by RTA offices at Dubai Mall,” a policeman said.

“When we questioned the employees at the office, it turned out that a Jordanian woman had issued the documents for the defendants.”

All four were charged with forgery and use of forged documents.

The Tunisian, 32, was also charged with refraining from paying rental fees and embezzlement, while the woman, 25, was additionally charged with aiding and abetting.

The four were not in court to face the charges but a verdict is expected on June 6.

salamir@thenational.ae

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