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02 October 2023

Expert called again in Nakheel case

Expert called again in Nakheel case. (AFP)

By Mohammed Elsidafy

The Dubai Criminal Court yesterday adjourned a bribery and embezzlement case related to Nakheel, an arm of Dubai World, to February 3 to hear further testimony from Mohammed Mustafa Hussein, an expert at the Financial Audit Department of the Dubai Ruler's Court.

Six defendants are involved in the case, including four who are still at large.

The court yesterday rejected a request for bail for the case's main defendant Canadian SR, 31, a former sales consultant at Nakheel, who is accused of accepting a Dh22 million bribe and harming the interests of Nakheel, which lost Dh10.989m as a result of his actions. The defence depended in its request on the Central Bank's sealing of the accounts of the defendant's father, which contained a total of Dh16m.

The second and third defendants, Canadian LS, 59, who is released with her passport withheld, and British BS, at large, are accused of offering a Dh16.668m bribe to the first defendant in return for enabling them to reserve islands on The World project with numbers D33, D45, D92, G2, G5 and G7, without obliging them to mention the name of the purchaser on the official form and without signing the official contracts.

The fourth defendant, AS, Bangladeshi, who is also at large, is accused of offering a Dh2.731m bribe to the first defendant in return for reserving islands with the numbers D86, D74 and D75, also without mentioning the purchaser's name on official documents or signing the reservation contract.

The fifth defendant SM, Russian, again at large, is accused of offering a Dh2.469m bribe to the first defendant in return for enabling the fourth defendant to reserve two of the islands.

The sixth defendant is the father of SR, the first defendant, and is accused of opening an account at Emirates Bank International in his name for depositing the bribes that his son received, authorising SR to operate the account and transferring the money to SR's account though he was aware it was obtained by illegal means.

SR, who is in judicial custody, attended yesterday's session. The second defendant attended also along with lawyers Saeed Al Gelani and Issa bin Haidar.

According to an earlier testimony by Hussein to the public prosecution, SR's alleged profits through the bribes he took was to the tune of Dh21.845m, the court heard.


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