Businessman robbed of Dh800,000 after Bitcoin scam, court hears

Victims were tied up and robbed after being lured to apartment by Facebook advert

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A gang of tricksters robbed four businessman of Dh800,000 after luring them to an apartment through an online Bitcom sale scam, a court heard.

The eight defendants, six from Pakistan, one from India and another from Bangladesh, aged between 35 and 44, posted that they were selling Bitcoin on Facebook and soon set up a meeting with the interested parties.

The Chinese victims met with three of the defendants at an apartment in Al Rafaa, Dubai, on March 29 of this year, only for other members of the gang to burst into the address claiming to be police officers.

“They showed us pictures of the Bitcoins and documents before a group of men stormed in saying they were police,” said one of the Chinese victims.

Dubai Criminal Court was told the men, who said they were criminal investigators, tied them up before making off with the huge sum of money.
"They stole the money and our mobile phones then locked us inside the apartment and fled," the victim said.

One of the businessman managed to free himself and grab hold of one of the defendants, restraining him until police arrived.

"We arrived to the flat after receiving the report from the victims and found one of the defendants," a policeman said in records.

The officer said they were able to track down the other suspects from the number plate of the getaway car they used.

In court, all eight defendants denied charged of confinement and theft.

The next hearing was scheduled on January 3.