Dubai: A tax refund company employee went on trial accused of stealing Dh70,000 this week.

The 34-year-old Filipino forged electronic documents on his company’s system, which refunds value added tax (VAT) to travellers at Dubai International Airport. He then deposited the money onto credit cards for his own benefit.

The accused’s duty was to receive travellers refund documents and use the username and password in the company system to refund money to travellers.

However, the director of the tax refund company noticed two credit card numbers repeatedly appeared in tax refund transactions for different travellers.

“Some travellers who applied for cash refunds were in a hurry to catch their flights,” said the company director. “The defendant changed their refund transactions from cash to credit card payments and put the refund amount for his benefit onto two credit cards.”

The tax refund company received a complaint from a traveller that the amount hadn’t been refunded onto his credit card.

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“The system showed that he [the defendant] used two credit cards several times for different travellers,” added the director. “He illegally obtained Dh69,311 in tax refunds.”

From November 18 2018, eligible tourists in the UAE have been able to request refunds on VAT from purchases made while in the UAE. Only eligible tourists with tax invoices issued from November 18 onwards are able to reclaim tax paid on their purchases, according to the Federal Tax Authority (FTA). The defendant admitted theft and forging electronic documents.

A verdict will be issued on June 24.