UAE arrests seven in $10bn bank fraud case
Abu Dhabi, January 24, 2010
Abu Dhabi police have arrested seven men for plotting to defraud the UAE central bank of 7.2 billion euros ($10.17 billion) using false documents, according to a report by the state news agency WAM.
It said the suspects - three Europeans and four Asians - had presented forged documents from a commercial bank in Europe purporting that the central bank of the United Arab Emirates owed the funds representing the family investments of the gang's leader.
'The documents presented by the suspects were fake and meant for attempted fraud targeting the central bank,' WAM quoted Colonel Hammad al-Hammadi, director of the police's Criminal Investigation Department, as saying.
The suspects also had a power of attorney from their leader authorising the withdrawals, the agency said.
The arrests were made in co-ordination with the central bank's anti-money laundering unit, he said, adding that the suspects had denied the charges of forging documents and attempted fraud.
Five of those held had arrived in the UAE, the Gulf's trade and business centre, on visitor visas while the two others lived in the country, Hammadi told WAM.
The state agency did not give the nationalities of the suspects, nor clarify whether any funds were actually withdrawn.-Reuters