Man conned businessman, embezzled his Dh1.4m

Businessman hired suspect’s services in 2013 to cancel his trade licence, issue new one in capital

Dubai: A man has been accused of embezzling Dh1.4 million and conning a businessman who had hired his services to get a trade licence issued, a court heard on Thursday.

The British businessman was said to have hired his countryman’s services to help the former to cancel the trade licence of his Dubai-based company and incorporate a new company in Abu Dhabi in 2013.

The businessman then wired Dh1.4 million in three payments to the man, according to records, before the latter emailed a photocopy of a trade licence for the supposed new company in Abu Dhabi.

When the 47-year-old businessman visited the Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development, he was notified that the emailed trade licence was forged.

Then he lodged a criminal complaint with the Dubai Police.

Prosecutors charged the British suspect of forging the photocopy of a trade licence, conning the businessman and embezzling his money.

According to the accusation sheet, the suspect is identified as a fugitive.

The suspect failed to appear before the Dubai Court of First Instance where he was scheduled to enter his plea on Thursday.

The British businessman claimed to prosecutors that he agreed with the runaway suspect to cancel his company’s trade licence and residency in Dubai and issue a new licence from Abu Dhabi.

“I wired him money in three payments in December 2014, May 2015 and June 2015 … the last payment was Dh1.2 million. However, he did not have the trade licence issued. He emailed me a photocopy of a trade licence purported to have been issued in Abu Dhabi. When I checked its authenticity at the department concerned in Abu Dhabi, they told me that it was forged,” he testified to prosecutors.

The suspect was quoted as admitting to prosecutors that he collected Dh178,000 to cancel the businessman’s trade licence and his Dubai residency and incorporate a company for him in the capital.

He was also cited as telling prosecutors that his email did not contain the forged photocopy of the trade licence but it contained the steps required to issue a trade licence in Abu Dhabi.

Presiding judge Urfan Omar will sentence the suspect in absentia on January 29.

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