Only judicial panel can hear property cheque disputes

Only judicial panel can hear property cheque disputes. (EB FILE

Disputes related to property cheques can only be looked into by a special judicial committee and not by courts and the public prosecution, according to a new legal principle established by the Dubai Court of Cassation.

Decisions issued by the committee are binding on all bodies concerned in investigations and implementation, such as the public prosecution, courts and police, it said.

This new principle is the implementation of decree No 56 of 2009 issued by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, which set up a special judicial committee to settle disputes related to cheques for property transactions.

The decree's Article 3 stipulates: "The committee will settle cases related to bounced cheques, whether issued by a buyer to a developer or from tenants and beneficiaries of long-term units.

"Judgments pronounced by the committee will be decisive and cannot be challenged and will be implemented through the execution department of the Dubai Courts."

The decree prevents the public prosecution and courts from carrying out any investigations into bounced property cheques or issuing any ruling in this regard. They can simply refer such cases to the specialist committee for settlement.

The Court of Cassation established this principle in appeal No 427 of 2009 lodged by Mariam Gloum Abdullah via her lawyer Haroun Tahlok against the public prosecution, appealing against sentence No 4,190 of 2009 issued by the Dubai Court of Appeals.

The public prosecution had accused Gloum of mala fide intentions in writing six cheques for property transactions worth Dh10.3 million, when she did not have sufficient credit in her account.

The Dubai Court of Misdemeanor sentenced Gloum to three years in jail. The defendant appealed against the sentence at the Dubai Court of Appeals, which reduced the sentence to only a year.

She appealed again at the Court of Cassation, which ruled to cancel the sentence and referred the case to the Appeals Court again to be judged by a judicial committee according to the aforementioned decree, which prevents courts to look into disputes involving cheques in real estate transactions.

 

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