x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 19 January 2018

Sharjah police arrest 92 illegal immigrants

Tip-off that more than 60 men were living in abandoned homes and flats due for demolition.

SHARJAH // Police have arrested 92 illegal immigrants living in "appalling" conditions in abandoned homes and flats in the Al Marijah and Shuwaiheen areas of Sharjah. The arrests followed a tip that 62 illegal immigrants were living in four dilapidated buildings in Al Marijah, near Airport Road, that the municipality was preparing to demolish. Officers also raided two flats in the nearby Shuwaiheen area and arrested 30 people, including 18 Pakistanis.

Brig Yousef Musa al Naqbi, the head of Sharjah CID, said the arrests over the weekend were part of an operation to rid residential areas of "illegals" he claimed were involved in crimes such as theft and bootlegging. "The area [in Al Marijah] was quiet during the day and no one could believe some people were staying there," he said. "But when we returned to the place at around midnight, there was a lot of noise. We cordoned off the whole area and managed to seize 62 illegals, all of them from Pakistan."

He said people were sleeping on the floor in buildings without electricity or water. He said most of those arrested had entered the country illegally, were fleeing from their sponsors or had recently lost their jobs, and would be deported. ykakande@thenational.ae