x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Fitness instructor racks up Dh300,000 hotel bill

JB, from Spain, is accused of forging documents to back up her claim that the gym she was working for would pay the tab.

ABU DHABI // A fitness instructor racked up a Dh300,000 hotel bill after falsely claiming a government authority would be paying, a court heard yesterday.

JB, from Spain, was said to have told the hotel that the gym she was working for in Hamdan Street would pay for her stay while she went through the recruitment process. The Abu Dhabi Criminal Court of First Instance heard that she forged documents from the General Authority of Youth and Sports Welfare to back up this claim.

Her stay was said to have lasted months, while she also managed to get her father and uncle rooms.

During a previous court hearing witnesses from both the authority and the hotel said JB had given the hotel letters supposedly from the authority.

Witnesses for the authority said the letters were forged.

A witness for the hotel said JB was given the chance to settle her bill, but she did not. The witness added that the Spanish embassy had offered to help JB when it saw her father and uncle were involved, but backed out when it heard of the accusations against her.

JB's lawyer argued yesterday that there was no proof that JB had forged the documents.

The lawyer also said JB was trying to pay the bill, but that her uncle and father would need to travel to Spain to obtain the money and their passports had been confiscated.

JB is also accused of illegally residing in the country. Her lawyer said she was unable to renew her visa as her passport had also been confiscated.

The verdict will be announced on March 13.

hdajani@thenational.ae