x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Two men are accused of Dh160,000 swindle

Two African men were charged with fraud after police said they persuaded a man to put them up in a hotel and then swindled him.

DUBAI // Two African men were charged with fraud yesterday after police said they persuaded a man to put them up in a hotel, then swindled him out of Dh160,000 (US$44,000). Dubai Police said in a statement that they had been contacted by an Asian man telling them he had been victimised. The victim said he had received a phone call from an African man after posting online that he had land to sell.

The caller said his father wanted to buy the land and would be arriving in Dubai in the following days. The seller put the two men up in a hotel apartment in Deira, and then was told that the amount needed for the land purchase was being held in an African bank. Police say one of the Africans told the Asian that Dh400,000 was needed to redeem the funds. The seller then paid the suspects Dh90,000 and Dh70,000 before he began to suspect fraud, according to officials.

"Economic and business transactions in this country have clear rules and the right channels to go through," said Brig Khalil al Mansouri, director general of inquiries and criminal investigations at the Dubai Police. "Some people deal with things very spontaneously without checking the credibility of those they are dealing with, which makes them the victims of fraud. Caution must be exercised." hkhalaf@thenational.ae