Dubai - He took him in and treated him out to dinner.
Four Arab men were accused of killing a businessman in a robbery that appeared to have been carefully planned, the Dubai Court of First Instance heard on Sunday.
One of the suspects, a 28-year-old cleaner, had already stolen Dh3,000 from the victim in a previous incident. When the victim learned about the theft, he ended his relationship with the cleaner, records showed.
The cleaner, however, didn't stop there. In April, he allegedly plotted a bigger crime with the rest of his group.
They planned to earn the victim's trust so they could get inside his hotel apartment, steal his credit card, and withdraw some cash, according to court records.
The second suspect, a 25-year-old, admitted to prosecutors that he agreed to disguise himself as "a jobseeker who needs a place to stay" so that the victim could take him to his apartment.
The fake jobseeker spoke with the businessman and tried to befriend him. He even got the chance to dine with him, and when the victim was paying the bill, the suspect was able to catch a glimpse of his PIN number, which later helped the group withdraw money using his card, the records showed.
Falling prey to the trap, the businessman led the man into his hotel apartment. A physical brawl ensued inside the unit when the victim noticed that his credit card was being stolen.
"[The suspect] then tied him up, but [the victim] begged him to take all the money he wants and leave. When he untied the victim's restraints, the latter started fighting with him," the prosecution said.
He struck the victim with a wooden drawer in the head until the latter passed out. He then stole three credit cards, a mobile phone, three watches and some cash before storming out of the room, according to the prosecution.
Forensic records confirmed that the businessman died of a major head injury. Bruises and scratches were also found on his face, neck, hand and stomach.
Getting the money
Footage from the hotel's CCTV cameras showed the second suspect going into the apartment with the victim and later leaving the hotel through the emergency exit.
All along, the third member of the group, a 24-year-old unemployed man, was standing by to see the suspect after the robbery. He confessed to meeting with the alleged robber and throwing the stolen mobile phone and watch into the sea in a bid to cover up their tracks.
An ATM camera captured the duo's Dh10,000 withdrawal using the stolen credit card. They took the money in two separate incidents, Dh4,000 in the first withdrawal and Dh6,000 in the next.
Alerted of suspicious transactions, the manager of the businessman's bank called their client's cousin, who also noticed the victim's absence on WhatsApp and his affairs.
He then reported the disappearance to the police, which started the investigation, tracked down the suspects and arrested them.
The group, which included a fourth man who was part of the plan, denied the murder charges before the Court of First Instance.
The case has been adjourned to January 8.