sim card generic
Sim cards. For illustrative purposes only. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: A man was sentenced to life in absentia on Tuesday by the Dubai Court of First Instance for using forged documents to transfer Dh13.4 million from a private company’s bank account to another account in New York.

The Kazakhstani, 43, and his female accomplice, 33, who was found innocent in Tuesday’s ruling, were working in a private company when they allegedly obtained a SIM card under the name of the company’s owner in order to make the transfer.

According to official records, the male defendant posed as the Russian owner of the company after applying for a SIM card replacement.

The SIM card was then used to obtain the victim’s bank pin number which was later used to authorise two transfers from his account in September 2013.

“I was on vacation when my SIM card stopped working,” said the Russian owner, 51. “I called the woman, who works as a sales manager in the company, to take up the matter with Etisalat. I called her later but she had switched her phone off. Other employees then alerted me that both defendants had left the country.”

When the company owner returned to the UAE, the bank told him about the transfers from his account.

He opened a case at Al Rifaa police station and investigations revealed that the couple had forged the man’s signature on the transfer applications.

Prosecutors said that the two defendants forged documents to issue a new SIM card claiming that he had lost his original SIM card.

When the bank called the number as a security precaution to confirm the transfers, the defendant posed as the manager to confirm the transfer.

Both defendants were charged with forgery, using forged documents and fraudulently obtaining Dh13.4 million.

The court fined the male defendant with Dh1 million and a jail term, followed by deportation.