Swift approval of e-warrants helps to arrest criminals faster, Dubai’s top law official says

Prosecutors can electronically sign and issue warrants once they receive a request from a police station

Dubai, United Arab Emirates - Reporter: N/A: Corona. A police car patrols an empty JBR. Tuesday, April 14th, 2020. Dubai. Chris Whiteoak / The National
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E-warrants approved in 20 minutes or less have helped police officers arrest criminals faster and in keeping the evidence safe, said Dubai's attorney general.

The technology introduced in 2014 has been touted as a timesaver that allowed law enforcement officials to approve warrants in minutes – as compared to hours officers spent in filling out forms and going to see a judge in person to get a signature.

"It's a quality shift in law enforcement procedures that saves time and effort and expedites arrests and helps to obtain and preserve evidence from being tampered with," Dubai's Attorney General Essam Al Humaidan said.

“It makes use of modern technology to optimise and better serve justice by facilitating policing work.”

Initially, Dubai Public Prosecution electronically issued arrest and search warrants in drug cases.

After successful trials, the smart service was implemented at all prosecution offices and police stations in the emirate in 2016.

More than 25,600 e-warrants were issued between 2017 and 2020, with 75 per cent of them issued in drug cases.

The number of e-warrants issued in 2020 dropped to 6,650 from 7,215 the year before due to the Covid-19 impact, Mr Al Humaidan said.