190910 dubai police
Dubai Police arrested one of the accused in the robbery case while he was trying to exit the country. Picture for illustrative purposes only. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: Dubai Police caught a South African visitor, who had robbed a villa here, at Dubai International Airport while he was trying to escape from the country.

According to the Dubai Court of First Instance, the 40-year-old defendant was caught in less than 24 hours after robbing a villa in the Al Rashidiya area with four other defendants.

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They broke into the empty villa in August last year and stole gold jewellery worth Dh250,000 and Dh70,000 in cash that were inside a safe. The 37-year-old Emirati villa owner testified that he had left the house in the afternoon to attend a funeral in Abu Dhabi and returned after midnight to discover the robbery. “I saw the lights on and discovered there was a robbery. I called Dubai Police and entered the villa with them. My father’s room was in a mess and police told me the suspects had broken into the villa from the back window,” the Emirati victim said on record.

After 12 hours, Dubai Police summoned him to identify the stolen safe. A policeman said that they had caught one of the defendants at Dubai Airport before he could leave the country. “He admitted of robbing several houses along with the other suspects. We found the stolen items and arrested the other suspects also. They climbed the villa’s [perimeter] wall and broke in.

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They claimed that they had knocked on the door to make sure nobody was in the house before breaking in through the back window.

Dubai Public Prosecution has charged the defendants — a South African, three Tanzanians and a Bangladeshi — with robbery and damaging the villa’s window and door.

The next hearing is scheduled for November 15.