Ex-GFH official accused of $6.45m embezzlement
Dubai, May 27, 2014
A former managing director of English Championship club Leeds United has been arrested in Dubai on charges of embezzling 23.7 million dirhams ($6.45 million) from an investment bank he used to work for, the emirate's police force said in a statement.
David Haigh, who until March was deputy chief executive of Dubai-based GFH Capital, a unit of Bahrain's Gulf Finance House, has been referred to Dubai's public prosecutor for trial.
"The company discovered the legal irregularities committed by Haigh when it conducted its annual internal accounting audit," a Dubai police statement to the United Arab Emirates' state news agency Wam said.
Haigh was at the forefront of GFH Capital's purchase of Leeds United, which plays in England's second tier, in December 2012, although the Dubai firm's tenure at Elland Road proved fleeting.
GFH Capital last month sold 75 percent of Leeds to Italian Massimo Cellino, retaining the remaining 25 percent.
Haigh worked for GFH Capital from December 2007 to March 2014, according to his LinkedIn profile.
In a separate statement, GFH Capital said Haigh's arrest was not related to the sale to Cellino.
Jinesh Patel, GFH Capital's CEO, said: "The issues that GFH has referred to the Dubai and UK authorities are unrelated to the purchase by Mr Massimo Cellino of a 75 per cent stake in Leeds United from GFH earlier this year."
"GFH Capital is confident that it has fulfilled all its duties and obligations properly in bringing the allegations against David Haigh to the attention of the appropriate authorities," the statement added. - Reuters and TradeArabia News Service