Rent scam in Dubai: Man jailed for taking Dh135,000 deposit, cheques for villa he didn't own

This fraudster was found putting up fake for-rent ads on random vacant houses, claiming he owned the properties


Afkar Ali Ahmed

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Published: Thu 16 Mar 2023, 4:48 PM

Last updated: Thu 16 Mar 2023, 7:28 PM

A 38-year-old Asian expat in Dubai was sentenced to a month in prison after scamming a resident who was looking for a villa to rent. He had put up a for-lease ad on a vacant house he didn't own and took cheques, plus Dh135,000 in cash as deposit.

The Arab resident found the villa in Al Twar area and spotted the ad that stated it was available for an annual rent of Dh235,000. He then contacted the number on the ad and spoke to the suspect who claimed he was the owner and introduced him to another person who served as the mediator and supported his claims, court records show.

The victim then asked if he could inspect the villa and they agreed on a date. He went to to the place at the designated time, and met the accused. Later, he met the duo again at a hotel, where he handed them Dh135,000 as deposit and wrote two cheques worth Dh100,000, according to court records.

But when it was time for the villa handover, the victim couldn't get hold of the duo. He then started asking for a refund, but no one responded to him. That was the time he discovered they had no right to rent out the property, and others also fell victim to the scam.

He reported the matter to the police and the case was taken to court. The accused was arrested while the mediator still at large.

The incident had promoted the police and judicial authorities to warn residents of such real estate scams.

Besides the prison sentence, the convict will be deported, according to the court ruling.


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