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    • Criminal Complaint filed against Al Fajer Properties Sheikh Maktoum
      Criminal Complaint filed in Germany against Sheikh Maktoum Hasher Maktoum Juma Al Maktoum CEO of Dubai Developer Al Fajer Properties The Dubai Sheikh who mislead and extort a German Couple  Germany – Dubai 2011 A German elderly couple , today 80 + 50 years old who have been Dubai Tourists since a decade, bought in 2005 an apartment at Nakheel´s Dubai Residen […]
    • UAE: Human Rights Blogger, Sorbonne Lecturer Charged With ‘Humiliating' Officials
      source Human Rights Watch www.hrw.org (Beirut) - The United Arab Emirates attorney general should immediately drop all charges against five pro-democracy activists to halt their trial, Human Rights Watch said today. The charges of "humiliating" top officials relate solely to the defendants' peaceful use of speech to criticize the UAE governmen […]
    • Nakheel Dubai Sunland Case
      June 5, 2011After 21 hearings, Chris O'Donnell, the Australian chief executive of Dubai's major developer, Nakheel, came to the defence of his former colleagues Matthew Joyce and Marcus Lee. Mr Joyce and Mr Lee are accused of profiting from the sale of land that had been earmarked for a colossal high-rise development, which was to include the futur […]
    • Dubai Nakheel CEO decided to leave the company
      Dubai June 7, 2011 Nakheel said on Wednesday that its CEO Chris O'Donnell had left the company "after completing his contract terms". O'Donnell, an Australian who joined the developer in 2006, said he had decided to leave Nakheel following five years spent with the company, the statement added. O'Donnell has overseen a traumatic time […]
    • Owner of Dubai Developer Damac Hussain Sajwani files case against Egypt corruption ruling
      Dubai property developer Damac said on Tuesday it had filed an international arbitration case against Egypt over a land dispute and the conviction of its chairman and owner, Hussain Sajwani.A Cairo court last week sentenced Sajwani in his absence to jail and ordered him to pay a $40.5 million fine in connection with his 2006 purchase of land at Egypt's […]
    • Dubai Palm Jumeriah - Investors plan to take legal action
      Investors in Dubai Palm Jumeirah’s Golden Mile complex will this week serve the developer behind the project with a legal ultimatum to hand over their units or issue them with a refund.Up to ten investors in the luxury complex plan to issue Souq Residences with legal notice in a bid to force a resolution to a dispute that has been ongoing for more than a yea […]
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Archive for May 1st, 2008

Wall Street Journal – Scandals in Dubai Cast a Cloud

Posted by 7starsdubai on May 1, 2008


original published Wall Street Journal http://online.wsj.com/article/SB120941603017750659.html
and
http://www.zawya.com/story.cfm/sidDN20080428017680/lok233629080428?weeklynewsletter&zawyaemailmarketing

Some Problem Deals In Real Estate May Dent Trust
By MARGARET COKERApril 29, 2008; Page C2

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — This city-state’s real-estate market is booming. Massive building projects scrape the sky. Sales and rental prices appear buoyant as investments flow in from other oil-rich Persian Gulf states, the former Soviet Union, India and Iran.

But a series of legal tussles and property-related scandals could dent foreign-investor confidence and tarnish the business-friendly reputation the government has tried so hard to burnish.
Earlier this month, the chief executive of one of Dubai’s largest publicly traded developers was jailed. And two disputes involving European and U.S. investors have raised concerns about Dubai’s regulatory and legal safeguards.
Foreigner-Friendly

The U.A.E., a collection of seven, semiautonomous emirates, was the first of the Arab Gulf states to allow foreign-property ownership. The country, a major oil producer, remains at the center of the Gulf region’s construction surge. More than a third of the estimated $1.2 trillion in projects under way in the region are in the oil-rich U.A.E., according to a report by the London-based Middle East Economic Digest, which tracks building projects.

While Dubai lacks the big oil reserves of its neighbor Abu Dhabi, it has diversified away from petroleum, building a reputation as a hub for tourism, business and transportation. Crucial to that strategy are its development projects.
Dubai has regaled tourists and investors alike with megaprojects such as the construction of Burj Dubai, the world’s tallest building, and the planned Palm developments, three separate man-made island clusters in the shape of palm trees.

“The perception of Dubai is based on the Burj, the Palm trilogy and sunshine 365 days a year. So far, you could call it a successful marketing campaign,” said Martin Kohlhase, a senior analyst in Dubai for Moody’s Investors Service, the credit-rating company. “There is so much at stake.”
Marwan bin Ghalita, chief executive of Dubai’s Real Estate Regulatory Agency, said he has worked hard over the past few months to improve rule making and enforcement among Dubai’s 742 licensed developers. “We are doing a very good job, but there are still lots of things to do to achieve awareness about the rules and procedures here,” said Mr. bin Ghalita.

Deyaar Development PJSC said earlier this month that its former chief executive, Zack Shahin, had left the company and was being held by Dubai police. The company, listed on the local stock exchange, disclosed the moves after the Zawya Dow Jones wire service reported the arrest.
Mr. Shahin, a U.S. citizen, is being held as part of an investigation into alleged financial wrongdoing at the company. In a jail-house interview, he told the wire service he was innocent.

Mystery has shrouded the case, raising concerns about the extent of its repercussions on the company, one of Dubai’s biggest developers. A Deyaar spokeswoman declined to comment.
Another project — on the Palm Jebel Ali archipelago, one of the three clusters — also recently became a battleground between a Dubai developer and disgruntled investors.
In 2003, Damac Properties, one of Dubai’s largest private developers, sold apartments in a 25-story building, known as Palm Springs. The company targeted British investors, eager to snap up retirement or rental properties.

Last month, Damac sent letters to those investors, saying the project had been canceled, giving few details. When investors pressed, they were told Palm Jebel Ali’s government-controlled master developer, Nakheel PJSC, hadn’t given Damac suitable land on which to build.
‘Out of the Blue’

Damac promised to return investors’ money, plus 6% interest, or give discounts on another Damac property. The Palm Springs apartments were sold for about $220 a square foot, according to investors. Current market prices in the same area are as much as $890 a square foot.
“It came out of the blue,” said Colin Murray, who lives southwest of London and bought two Palm Springs apartments.

Mr. Murray helped band together 80 investors in the United Kingdom. They filed a formal complaint with Dubai’s Real Estate Regulatory Agency. Nakheel denied it had caused the project cancellation, and regulatory officials launched talks between Nakheel and Damac. Damac then told investors that the project was back on.

The agency’s Mr. bin Ghalita said Dubai law gives Damac six months to start construction. He said he “would be keeping my eye” on the situation.

The controversy over Palm Springs was just the most prominent in a series of property-investor complaints. The local English-language press has reported stories of middle-class families being bilked by unlicensed brokers or unscrupulous developers who have taken large deposits and failed to deliver. And then there are delays in finishing construction. Damac has completed only 18% of its $30 billion real-estate portfolio.
Financiers in Tussle

It isn’t only small investors getting ensnared. U.S. private-equity firm Capital Partners, a real-estate-development arm of McKinley Reserve, of Wisconsin, is in a $1 billion legal dispute with Tecom Investments, a subsidiary of Dubai Holding, which is owned by Dubai’s ruler, Sheik Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

In 2005, Capital Partners and Tecom signed a contract allowing the Americans to develop a 15-hectare site called Riverwalk. Months later, however, the deal had turned sour. Capital Partners accused Tecom of selling it land that it didn’t own, specifically, almost a hectare that was a designated archaeological site.

With $10 million already sunk into the project, Capital Partners refused to make a scheduled second payment to Tecom until the ownership issues had been worked out. Tecom said that missed payment was grounds to terminate the contract. The case is before the Dubai International Arbitration Center, an independent tribunal.

Posted in Dubai, Vereinigte Arabische Emirate | Tagged: , , , , , , | Comments Off on Wall Street Journal – Scandals in Dubai Cast a Cloud

Fourth arrest confirmed in Deyaar probe

Posted by 7starsdubai on May 1, 2008


original published
Arabian Business
http://www.arabianbusiness.com/517896-four-people-detained-over-financial-irregularities-at-deyaar?ln=en

Four people have now been detained over alleged financial irregularities at Dubai developer Deyaar, although formal charges have yet to brought in the case, a Public Prosecution source confirmed on Tuesday.The source told ArabianBusiness.com a fourth person was arrested on Tuesday in connection with the investigation, but could not confirm earlier media reports the person is also a company employee. The Public Prosecution has also extended former Deyaar CEO Zack Shanin’s detention period by one month, the source said.More arrests could follow, the source said.

“Investigations are still underway, but we expect to lay charges later. It takes time. We are investigating reports one by one and Deyaar is also investigating,” the source said.The other arrests in the case are a Lebanese sales manager who was detained on Monday, and an Indian national who was detained on Wednesday.RELATED: Third arrest in Deyaar probeRELATED: Deyaar scandal escalates with second arrest Public information is scarce on the high-profile case, which broke on April 17 when Deyaar informed Dubai Financial Market (DFM) that Shahin had been detained for three weeks and had subsequently resigned his position.RELATED: Deyaar CEO detained, faces investigationDeyaar has refused to comment on Shanin’s arrest or the investigation.According to media reports, the Public Prosecution is investigating company fraud valued at 120 million dirhams ($33 million), but this is unconfirmed by both the Public Prosecution and Deyaar.At a meeting of Deyaar’s board of directors on April 20, members Hussein Hassan Mirza Mohammed Al-Sayegh and Sultan Ahmad Khalfan Al-Ghaith also resigned, the company said in a statement without saying why. Abdullah Ali Al-Hamli and Butti Abdulla Al-Jumairi replaced the two directors, Deyaar said.RELATED: Deyaar confirms two directors resign Deyaar, an affiliate of Dubai Islamic Bank, develops, rents and manages properties and operates according to Islamic law, or sharia, which bans borrowing or lending on interest.The firm reported a first-quarter profit of 202 million dirhams ($55.01 million) with revenue in the quarter hitting 460 million dirhams.

Posted in Dubai, Vereinigte Arabische Emirate | Comments Off on Fourth arrest confirmed in Deyaar probe

 
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