A gang of bootleggers who stashed more than 1,000 bottles of alcohol in a hole in the Dubai desert have been arrested by police.
The group had buried the illicit haul deep beneath the sands in Jebel Ali ahead of their sale.
Their plot was uncovered during the Eid break by patrolling police.
Officers snared seven men connected to the racket in three operations during the holiday, seizing 1,483 bottles in total.
“While patrolling the area, police officers noticed three Asian men taking out alcohol from a wooden box hidden in a hole in the desert and were caught red-handed,” said Brig Adel Al Suwaidi.
Police discovered a further 24 bags full of alcohol inside the makeshift storage area.
Two more members of the gang were arrested on Monday after being caught illegally transferring the bottles in their car.
“A police patrol moved immediately to the area and saw the two men’s vehicle and tried to stop them, but they did not respond and tried to escape,” said Brig Al Suwaidi.
Police officers followed the car, eventually bringing it to a stop before arresting both men.
“115 cans of alcoholic drinks of two different types were found in the vehicle at the time of the arrest,” said the senior official.
Another two men were arrested in the third operation after 258 bottles of liquor were found in their vehicle.
“The two men admitted that they are buying alcoholic drinks and then selling them in the industrial area to obtain financial gains using a rented car,” said Brig Al Suwaidi.