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For illustrative purposes only, man holding phone. A Dubai telecoms staffer used top up card cash to buy a Bentley Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: An employee in a local telecommunications firm stands accused of stealing Dh14.7 million from mobile phone recharge cards and using that money to buy a Bentley, Range Rover and Rolex, a Dubai court heard on Monday.

The 41-year-old Omani defendant used to collect damaged scratchcards from customers and give them a replacement at the company’s branch in Deira.

His company suddenly realised the defendant, who was on Dh17,196 a month, had suddenly become rich and was driving expensive cars with special number plates.

“He used to collect the damaged recharge cards from customers and replace it with new cards,” said an official from the telecom firm. “His duty was to enter the cards’ numbers in the system to cancel the credit in the card before damaging it. We noticed that he ordered huge amount of cards for replacement more than the other branches,” the official added.

Between 2015 and 2018, he illegally obtained Dh14.7 million.

The company investigated the matter and discovered that he didn’t delete damaged recharge card data from the system. It was not clear how he withdrew money from damaged recharge cards.

He claimed that he made the cancellation requests and put the cards in boxes that didn’t exist when the company checked later.

“He didn’t prove that he cancelled the cards. He was living on his salary without other income but he was driving Range Rover and Bentley and was always wearing his Dh100,000 Rolex,” the official said.

Dubai Public Prosecution said that the defendant was depositing thousands into his account at several intervals and had bought six special number plates for a large amount of money.

When the defendant was confronted with the evidence he declined to answer where he got the money from.

The defendant was charged with illegally obtaining Dh14.7 million from his company.

The trial has been adjourned until February 20 to prepare the defence.