Dubai: A porter who took advantage of his job to take money from passengers’ bags at Dubai International Airport has been jailed for six months.
The Dubai Court of First Instance also fined the 24-year-old, M.K, Dh3 and ordered him to repay Dh3, the amount he pocketed from a travellers’ luggage.
The defendant was charged with opening a number of handbags while at work in the airport’s loading area and stealing money.
“I am not guilty I did not steal Dh3… but I tried to open three handbags,” said the Kenyan national when he defended himself before Presiding Judge Ali Attiyah Sa’ad.
The accused will be deported after serving his sentence, according to the primary judgement that remains subject to appeal within 11 days.
The Public Funds Prosecution charged M.K. with abuse of public office [in his capacity as a porter at a security company hired by Dnata and Emirates airlines] and theft. He was also charged with attempted robbery.
Records said security officers manning secret surveillance cameras at the airport spotted the defendant opening travellers’ bags and rummaging through them.
An Emirati police corporal said the managements of Dnata and Emirates informed the police and asked for legal action to be taken against M.K.
“The footage exposed the defendant searching the content of travel bags. M.K. confessed that he was the one who was shown in the footage. He claimed that he opened bags in search for money because he was in dire need for it… but he admitted that he only found what was worth Dh3 [in Qatari riyals]. The Kenyan claimed that he opened bags that did not have locks. M.K. also claimed that he searched travellers’ bag four times over a period of eight months,” the corporal testified.
The primary judgement remains subject to appeal within 11 days.