x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 18 January 2018

Gang went on spree with forged cards, court told

Four Turks used fake credit cards to spend more than Dh600,000 (US$110,000) on designer clothes and jewellery, a court hears.

DUBAI // Four Turks used fake credit cards to spend more than Dh600,000 (US$110,000) on designer clothes and jewellery, a court heard yesterday. Police arrested the three men and one woman after the alleged shopping spree during February's Dubai Shopping Festival. The defendants - identified as II, 38, AH, 35, JM, 32, and the woman NB, 26 - denied using forged cards to buy the goods when they appeared before the Dubai Criminal Court of First Instance.

Public prosecutors stated on their charge sheet that a number of Turkish suspects were at large. NB was arrested on February 4 after a shop owner at the Mall of the Emirates claimed that a young Turkish woman had bought items with a fake credit card. Officers told prosecutors that she had confessed to making purchases worth Dh625,000 with fake cards. She was said to have told police that she and her accomplices used the cards to buy items at designer stores, jewellery shops and the cigarette outlet at Mall Of The Emirates. Purchases were also made at City Centre and BurJuman.

One jeweller told prosecutors that NH bought from him items worth more than Dh215,000 with a credit card on January 3. Another said she bought a diamond ring worth more than Dh84,000 from him, also using a card. A police sergeant said that after NB was detained, II and AH were arrested at a nightclub in Murraqabat, Deira, and JM was arrested by Dubai airport's criminal investigations department.

Forged credit cards and a gold chain were found on the defendants and a diamond-studded Breitling watch was retrieved during a search of their homes. Three immigration stamps and credit card forgery machines were also recovered. The defendants are also charged with forgery of seven Turkish passports, forging Dubai Immigration entry and exit stamps, producing forged credit cards, and aiding and abetting a crime and fraud.

All deny the charges. The trial was adjourned until September 1. newsdesk@thenational.ae