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Labour inspector jailed over Dh50,000 spa bribe

Driver cleared of aiding defendant, who asked owner to pay him not to have her spa inspected

Gulf News

Dubai An inspector at the Ministry of Labour has been jailed for a year for demanding Dh50,000 in bribe from the owner of a massage parlour.

The Emirati inspector called up a Chinese woman, who owns the parlour, and asked her to pay him money against which he promised not have her spa examined by him or any other ministry inspector in December.

The Dubai Court of First Instance convicted the inspector of requesting bribe and fined him Dh50,000.

According to Sunday’s ruling, presiding judge Fahd Al Shamsi cleared a Pakistani driver of conspiring with the Emirati defendant in collecting the bribe money from the Chinese woman.

The Pakistani suspect was cleared due to lack of evidence. Law enforcement officers apprehended the two men during a sting operation after the spa owner reported the matter to the police, said records.

The two pleaded not guilty and refuted their accusations.

Records said the defendant abused his work as a ministry inspector and promised the spa owner that her parlour would not be inspected if she paid him Dh50,000.

The Pakistani suspect told the court he had no clue or information about the bribe. The Chinese woman said the incident happened after the Emirati defendant inspected her spa in Al Nahda and fined her Dh80,000 for flouting labour laws.

“That was the first time I met him. In December, someone called me and warned me that labour inspectors would visit the spa and check it … the caller then offered to help me. He promised that if I paid him Dh60,000 he would bar all inspectors from examining my parlour. The caller turned out to be the convict. When I told him I cannot afford the amount, he reduced it to Dh50,000. I asked him to call me the next day because I was outside Dubai and did not have the amount. He phoned me the next day and urged me to pay him fast … when I suggested sending him the money with my husband, he refused because he said he knew that my husband is Emirati. I asked him to give me more time … then I informed the police,” she testified.

A police lieutenant said the Chinese woman cooperated with the police who apprehended the duo in a sting operation.

Sunday’s ruling remains subject to appeal within 15 days.