Ex-minister charged with wasting Dh155m

(File)

A former UAE minister has been accused of wasting nearly Dh155 million in public funds in the form of fees imposed on the public by the ministry he had headed, a newspaper said on Wednesday.

The minister was not present in court which held its first hearings into the case on Tuesday but his accomplices attended the trial, during which defence lawyers requested their release on bail.

Emarat Alyoum Arabic language daily did not name the minister but said his charges include facilitating the unlawful seizure of state funds of around Dh155.4 million by the other defendants.

According to the prosecution, the minister issued a decision in 2005, when he was holding a ministerial post, compelling clients to have their applications approved in return for fees without issuing another decision about collecting those fees.

The court also charged another defendant, who headed a government department, of collecting those fees for the ministry.

“This defendant, in complicity with the first defendant, gave easy access for the other defendants to seize those funds…the crime was perpetrated after an agreement between the defendants,” it said.

Emarat Alyoum, which did not name the minister and the accomplices, said the court adjourned trial to another date.

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