Dubai Land Department officer accused of asking for flat as bribe

The Emirati is said to have asked a real estate manager for an apartment for processing the documents related to the sale of three properties before changing his mind and asking for Dh70,000.

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DUBAI // An admin officer at Dubai Land Department allegedly first asked for an apartment and then Dh70,000 in return for facilitating three sale applications for an estate agent.

However, the Emirati defendant, A B, 27, has not yet faced the charges at Dubai Criminal Court, after the judge ordered the case file to be returned to prosecutors for amendment. It was not clear whether the change would affect the charges.

Records state that A B received three applications for three flats being sold at less than market price and in return for not sending Land Department staff to evaluate the flats, he asked the company selling them to give him an apartment and also hire his friend.

Prosecutors said that he later changed his mind about the apartment and asked for Dh70,000 in cash in return for his services.

“I was visiting the Land Department, which is something I do often, when the defendant took me to the car park and handed me the CV of an Egyptian man, telling me that it was his friend who left the country but would like to come back and that he wanted me to help hire him,” said 26-year-old Emirati, M K, who is a manager at the real estate company.

“I told him I will forward the CV to my managers and he said if I did so, he will facilitate our procedures.”

M K said he was ordered to ignore the admin officer’s request to hire his friend and, about three weeks later, when he returned to the department, the defendant asked him for a flat.

“He told me that a Russian man once rewarded him with a flat for facilitating his procedures and that he wants a flat from my company if he was going to do the same with us,” said M K.

The real estate manager said the admin officer then stalled on dealing with his paperwork before the defendant told him about how he was once given Dh70,000 by a company for prioritising their applications.

“He called me on April 24 and told me to prepare the apartment and then he will finalise the three applications for my company,” said M K.

The defendant allegedly asked M K not to register the flat in his name but the name of another man and he handed him the passport copy of the man.

“When this happened, we headed to the police and reported him and they arrested him,” said M K.

The next hearing will be on September 21.

salamir@thenational.ae