Dubai Police clamp down on begging after elderly targeted

More than 80 beggars arrested over Eid Al Fitr

Dubai Police's bicycle unit patrol the streets during Eid Al Fitr. Courtesy: Dubai Police
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Dozens of beggars were arrested in Dubai last week after they were caught targeting the elderly for money.

Police arrested 84 beggars during the Eid Al Fitr holiday, between May 22-26, while patrolling narrow streets on bicycles.

“They would claim they have no money to pay their bills and ask the elderly to help them,” said Cap Ahmed Al Zarouni, head of Deira Patrols.

Police stepped up their bicycle patrols over the holiday in anticipation of increased begging as some sought to take advantage of the spirit of giving associated with Eid and Ramadan.

Almost 50 police patrolled popular areas including City Walk, Jumeirah Beach Residences and Al Raqqa on bikes.

“Bicycle patrols aim to better serve community members by enabling the police be present in internal and crowded roads, where the car patrols could not enter,” said Cap Al Zarouni.

“They play a vital role in reducing crime rate and have helped raise awareness among the public about the importance of adhering to precautionary measures on daily basis during the hours of the national disinfection programme.”

Members of the bicycle unit are armed with seven-metre range taser guns, smart helmets that help officers remain connected and cameras that broadcast live to the operations room.