Dubai: Three drivers, who worked for a money transfer company and four others, who conspired with them, to steal Dh14 million from an armoured truck, were jailed for three years each on Monday.
The money transfer company’s security manager was alerted by two Nepalese guards that they lost contact with the armoured truck’s Pakistani driver, who had dropped them outside Al Ghurair Centre to fill an ATM machine in August.
The manager rushed to the location and asked the guards to search for the truck in the vicinity and keep on calling the driver’s mobile phone that was still ringing.
When the manager and the guards found the armoured truck parked at a nearby alley with its engine on, they informed the police. The 37-year-old Pakistani driver was missing,
Crime scene investigators and fingerprint experts examined the armoured truck. The truck’s CCTV footages clearly showed how the 37-year-old driver had disconnected the cameras and by doing so he became the primary suspect.”
- A police lieutenant
On-site investigations revealed that the Pakistani driver had moved from his seat to the rear area of the truck [where the money was placed] and disconnected the wires of the surveillance cameras.
Surveillance cameras of a building nearby showed that the 37-year-old and his two countrymen drivers, 30 and 39, carried four moneybags to a car and drove away.
After combing the surrounding area, police found the car left in a poorly lit area and CCTV footages picked up from that vicinity showed the three drivers jumping in to a taxi to flee from that location.
Police interrogations and tip-offs from informants led to the arrest of the Pakistani trio in Sharjah.
Four other Pakistani men were also apprehended for providing logistical support.
The Dubai Court of First Instance jailed the Pakistani trio [three drivers] to three years each for stealing Dh14 million in cash.
The remaining four defendants, aged between 33 and 48, were also jailed for three years each for abetment.
The seven accused will be deported after serving their punishments.
Records said the defendants had been tasked to transfer moneybags from different banks and commercial establishments in Dubai between August 24 and 25.
The 37-year-old and 30-year-old pleaded guilty and admitted that they stole the moneybags when they appeared in court.
The 39-year-old accused entered a not guilty plea.
The quartet, which was accused of abetment, refuted their accusations.
A police lieutenant said the company’s security manager reported to them about the heist.
“Crime scene investigators and fingerprint experts examined the armoured truck. The truck’s CCTV footages clearly showed how the 37-year-old driver had disconnected the cameras and by doing so he became the primary suspect. On-site investigations revealed the involvement of two more persons … also four others were involved in aiding and abetting the trio,” he told prosecutors.
The 37-year-old driver was quoted as admitting to prosecutors that they stole the money and the other four suspects were supposed to help them in transferring the stolen money to Pakistan.
The primary ruling remains subject to appeal.