The photo has been used for illustrative purposes.
Hamza M Sengendo, Staff Reporter
An unpaid money shop cleaner led an armed robbery. He and his compatriots brandished sharp tools and decamped with currencies worth Dhs183, 070, a jury heard on Thursday.
The African cleaner, 33, ganged up with a footballer, 29, visitor, 25, driver, 35, countryman, 27, and two fugitives to storm a money shop in Dubai Investments Park at around 7:30pm on Dec.18.2018, records showed. The gang members were wearing masks, gloves and sunglasses and armed with knives, axes, a meat cleaver and an electric cable. They cast fear in the hearts of employees and clients, the Dubai Criminal Court heard.
Investigations showed that three weeks before the incident the cleaner and an insolvent fugitive decided to rob the money shop. The fugitive mobilised others. They went to the scene and examined the security situation. They had another meeting and decided the robbery date and time. The footballer’s brother (who feared to participate directly) provided a getaway car. They purchased masks, gloves and tools from a Sharjah gifts shop.
On the date of the heist, they had a final meeting inside an apartment in Sharjah’s Abu Shagara area in the afternoon. They later set off. The driver parked outside the money shop and remained inside the car waiting. The visitor and countryman stood at the entrance. Three entered brandishing weapons. Fear-stricken clients ran out. The countryman got scared, dropped his mask and fled. He was netted at the Dubai International Airport. The trio dashed out of the money shop with cash, carried by the cleaner inside a schoolbag. His accomplices jumped inside the getaway car and sped off. Cops chased him. He dropped the bag. They pinned him down.
Since the getaway car driver was unacquainted with Dubai roads, he drove for around two kilo metres then stopped, not knowing where to head. They all jumped out, ran for a distance then hailed a taxi to take them. On the way, they came across a police roadblock at one of the roundabouts. They jumped out of the taxi and dashed in different directions. Cops nabbed them. During prosecution questioning, the cleaner acknowledged his role.
The footballer said he was exercising in Sharjah when a countryman asked him to join. “I attended the two meetings in Sharjah. After the robbery, we ran in different directions but police surrounded the area and arrested us.” The visitor said the cleaner and footballer asked him to join and convinced him that the money shop had not paid the cleaner his monthly salary. The countryman acknowledged brandishing a cable at the shop’s entrance. Case continues.
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