Crime and Courts

Warehouse keeper in UAE steals medical equipment worth Dh20,900

Marie Nammour /Dubai Filed on November 4, 2020

(Agencies file)

The medical euipment belonged to Dubai Health Authority.

A Dubai expat, who used to work as an assistant warehouse keeper when he allegedly stole Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) worth Dh 20,900, has been charged at the Court of First Instance.

The court heard how the 28-year-old Indian man stole the medical equipment, which belonged to the Dubai Health Authority (DHA).

He is accused of breach of trust and embezzlement of property belonging to a public entity and intentionally damaging its interests. As he had a key of the warehouse, he would receive medical equipment from suppliers and keep them at the storage house while listing them in the e-books. But he allegedly abused the trust and misappropriated the goods.

A case was registered at Al Rashidiya police station after the alleged crime unfolded.

A Filipina, who is a business partner at a firm that supplies medical gear, said that she did not know the accused prior to the case. “I struck a deal with DHA staff to sell them a quantity of PPE. We agreed on a certain price for the piece.”

On one of her visits to the authority’s warehouses in Al Karama on May 31, the witness was approached by an employee (the defendant). “He introduced himself as a warehouse keeper and gave me his mobile number. He said he had 1,200 PPE for sale and would show me a list of prices of other companies. He said he had the power to access the DHA’s system. The man also told me not to inform anyone about his offer,” the business partner recounted during investigation.

On the evening of the same day, the business partner (the witness) received a call from the defendant, repeating his offer to sell the 1,200 PPE for a price less than the market range.

A few days later, the accused called her again, and revealed to her the prices available at other suppliers. He wanted her help in selling the items he had.

On June 1, and while on a visit to the DHA to register her firm in their e-system, she informed a purchases management officer there about the defendant’s proposal and was then advised to report him to his superiors.

A store management section head said that the defendant had been working for the DHA since 2017. “I was surprised by what he did. The stolen merchandise is worth Dh20,900 of PPE (550 items).”

The accused was arrested in a sting operation by the police. He was caught red-handed right after selling the stolen equipment to the witness for Dh4,950 and loading it into her vehicle.

The trial has been adjourned to November 25.


Marie Nammour

Originally from Lebanon, Marie has been covering the Dubai Courts and the Public Prosecution, immigration and labour issues often, and the Dubai International Film Festival. A graduate from the Holy Spirit university of Kaslik, Jounieh, a city to the north of Beirut, she worked as an in-house reporter of international affairs at a leading TV station back home and a legal translator for a renowned law college in the Lebanese capital. Speaks fluently four languages and is fond of travelling, psychology, learning more and grown by now a rich ‘criminal’ imagination…

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