Man who stole Dh300,000 in visa scam must see out 3-year sentence

Pakistani fooled countryman into providing money for work visas from about 50 men in their homeland who wanted to come to Dubai for jobs.

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A Pakistani business partner will have to see out his three years in jail and will pay a fine of Dh250,000 for forging 50 UAE e-visas and charging his countryman more than Dh300,000 for them.

The 25-year-old approached a fellow Pakistani, 32, in September last year and told him that he was looking to hire a number of labourers to work at Al Maktoum Airport.

"I told him that I have many family members and acquaintances back home who are very interested in coming to the country to work, so he asked me to provide him with their passport copies to issue them work visas," said the 32-year-old.

He added that the defendant told him he needed about 100 men and that he would charge Dh7,000 each per visa but the 32-year-old was able to provide documentation for only about 50 men.

The victim was given copies of the e-visas, which he checked and found online so he handed Dh305,000 from family and friends who were hoping to come to Dubai to the defendant.

“He told me that plane tickets would be provided by the hiring companies and asked me to inform the men to be prepared for travel," said the victim.

But when he double checked online for the e-visas, he could not find them, so he went to Dubai Naturalisation and Residency Department, where he was told the visas were for visits, not work.

The man then contacted police and reported the business partner.

On September 26, police arrested the defendant and he allegedly confessed to making the forgeries and defrauding the victim.

During police questioning, it was discovered that after making a hard copy of the visit visas, the defendant deleted the word visit and added the word work instead.

In both criminal and appeal courts the defendant denied charges of forgery, use of forged documents and fraudulently obtaining Dh305,000, however Dubai Criminal Court found him guilty and sentenced him to three years in jail to be followed by deportation.

He appealed against the sentence but has now lost, so he must serve it.