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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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Posts Tagged ‘corruption’

Nakheel Dubai is a public joint stock company – not a private one

Posted by 7starsdubai on August 17, 2009


Dubai, August 17, 2009


 A letter presented to the Dubai Court of Appeal yesterday established that developer Nakheel is a public joint stock company (PJSC), not a private one.

The letter was produced by a lawyer representing Nakheel in the case of two former employees who are appealing against their convictions for bribery.

The defendants’ lawyer, Saeed Al Gelani, had said in an earlier session that a ruling by Court of First Instance that Nakheel was a public shareholding company was not true to facts.

He referred to an article by Nakheel’s legal advisor, David Nicholson, that appeared in Arroaya magazine, which is published by the developer. The article said Nakheel had become a private company and was published before the defendants were sent for trial. As a result, said Al Gelani, the two had been tried wrongly.

The accused are 32-year-old UAE national WA, a former general manager of sales at Nakheel, and Egyptian KN, 28, who was a sales representative at Nakheel. Prosecutors say they allegedly asked for a bribe of Dh5.1 million from a real estate brokerage firm to help it buy a plot owned by Nakheel.

Dubai Criminal Court jailed the defendants for three years and ordered them to pay Dh3m. The court is considering a third appeal by Public Prosecution.

original source Emirates Business 24/7

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Dubai Property Market – Flippers, skippers, runners, survivors battle it out

Posted by 7starsdubai on July 19, 2009


source PropertyWeekly

‘Flipping’, ‘skipping’ and ‘running’ are relatively new terms in the argot of Dubai’s property market. Many would know about at least one person who has done one of the three ‘disrespectful’ things, and may even be aware of several more via the city’s thriving rumour mill.

The residents who remain also have a new nomenclature for themselves — the ‘survivors’.

New players experiment with speculation

Flipping was hitherto the activity of buying and selling property instantly, and solely for instant profit. Despite the impression that this dangerous game is a thing of yore and was once the exclusive prerogative of high risk takers, it is not, and has attracted new players.

Flipping was once restricted to incomplete properties, but they are now doing it with credit notes. Also, flippers are not necessarily risk takers; some are trying to recover investments gone awry, while others are desperate for much needed cash.

Offloading multiple units

AR is a classic flipper. In December 2007, he owned three apartments — on paper — at various buildings in Dubai Marina. By September 2008, he had sold two for a cumulative profit of Dh1.23 million, despite the fact that both were not ready for occupation.

“I am lucky that I disposed them of before it was time to start paying my mortgages and before the economic downturn,” he says. “If things get bad, I will move into the one I still own, so no money lost. But, many other people who acted impulsively have done badly. I know some really sad stories and consider myself blessed.”

However, despite his narrow escape from steep losses, AR cannot shed his innate instincts. When questioned, he admits that he has purchased a credit note for 60 per cent of its face value, and is looking for a buyer who will take it off him for a profit.

Skippers caved in

Skippers are other risk takers like AR, but who didn’t have the sense, instincts, or gumption to offload their properties when the market soured. When they could not find buyers and saw alarming drops in prices, they caved.

Faced with the prospect of bounced cheques, rising debts and the threat of unemployment, some of these foolhardy investors just upped and left, or skipped.

Skippers are not available for quotes, but TQ who left the country in the first week of February is believed to have invested in no less than six properties across the country. A feat made possible by two facts: he was the creative director of an advertising agency and had a substantial salary, and he dealt with an Islamic bank that allows customers to have multiple mortgages.

Coincidentally, the day he lost his job is also the day he realised that the next set of payments towards his property portfolio totalled Dh246,000, and also, that there were no prospects of serious buyers on the anvil, for any of them.

Forfeiting down payments

His simple solution was to forfeit the nominal down payments he had made on the said properties, and to head back to his native country to sit out the storm. In his case, he paid off his credit cards, cleared his lesser debts, and told his bank that he was giving up his claim on the many apartments he owned.

Trail of debts

Runners, on the other hand, don’t bother doing any of the latter or the formalities associated with relocating from the country. One minute they are in Dubai, revelling in their enviable status as the owners of several properties, and the next minute, they are simply missing from the country, with only the trail of debts proving they lived here. They could now be anywhere.

Finally, those who have heard the horror stories and heaved heavy sighs say they too need a moniker for not falling into any of the above categories.

Ordinary residents who continue to pay rent on their homes, have strongly resisted the urge to invest in property. Those who actually live in the properties they purchased say they are just holding tight.

BJ owns a modest studio flat at The Greens and his brother MJ rents a one-bedroom apartment at Dubai Marina, and by their own admission, they worry about the appalling state of the world, just as much as they are alarmed about their own job security… or the possible lack of it.

According to MJ, their mission is to put away and save as much money as they can every month just so that they are not taken unawares by any unpleasant surprises — be it falling prices, increased rents, unexpected payments or unplanned debts.

“All those people we hear about have titles that classify them into categories. We believe that the rest of us who live in Dubai and eke out an everyday existence without running, skipping or flipping need one too. Just call us the ‘survivors’,” say the brothers.

And they are not being sardonic.

Flippers now deal in credit notes

• Despite the impression that flipping is a thing of yore and was once the exclusive prerogative of high risk takers, it has attracted new players
• Flipping was once restricted to incomplete properties, but they are now doing it with credit notes
• Also, flippers are not necessarily risk takers; some are trying to recover investments gone awry, while others are desperate for much needed cash
• Skippers are other risk takers, but who didn’t have the sense, instincts, or gumption to offload their properties when the market soured
• Runners simply go missing from the country, leaving behind a huge trail of debts

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Dirty money fears

Posted by 7starsdubai on April 3, 2009


source 7days.ae

The UAE is vulnerable to money laundering through smuggling, wire transfers, trade fraud, real estate and the gold and diamond trade, the US State Department has said in an annual report.

However, the report praised the UAE and Dubai governments’ efforts to cut down on money laundering, especially in the real estate and diamond industries.

The State Department’s Money Laundering and Financial Crimes report, which monitors countries around the world, said the UAE’s robust economic development and political stability “may leave the country susceptible to possible money laundering activities”.

“Given the country’s proximity to Afghanistan, where most of the world’s opium is produced, narcotics traffickers are increasingly reported to be attracted to the UAE’s financial centres,” it said.

“Other money laundering vulnerabilities in the UAE include hawala, (small wire transfer centres), trade fraud, smuggling, the real estate boom, and the misuse of the international gold and diamond trade.”

The report said hawala centres, where thousands of ex-pats would go to wire money home, are still likely to be the UAE’s biggest money laundering weakness.

While noting that Dubai is vulnerable to money laundering through its gold and diamond business, the report noted that the UAE has been a participant in the Kimberley Process certification scheme for rough diamonds since 2002, which helps cut down diamond imports from war zones.

Hossam Mohammad Abd El-Rahman, a money laundering expert with Allied Compliance Consultants in Dubai, said that the UAE Central Bank has done a lot of work to cut down on financial crimes.

El-Rahman, who has worked closely with the UAE and Dubai governments, said that the Central Bank had made “big improvements” in the laws in recent years and made it much more difficult to launder illegally-obtained money.

Last August, the Central Bank ordered financial institutions to register the details of anyone wiring or changing as little as dhs2,000 to stop money laundering.

Maryam Al Hashemi, the CEO of the Dubai Diamond Exchange, said Dubai has very strict standards for importation of diamonds and said there “can’t be any import or export of rough diamond shipments without being inspected and verified through official channels”. She went on to add that the exchange always cooperates with UN conflict diamond investigations.

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Dubai property market beset by fraud claims

Posted by 7starsdubai on May 10, 2008


Malaysia Sun

Claims of scams, fraud, and embezzlement are hitting the real estate market in Dubai.

The multi-billion dollar construction craze which has attracted investors from all over the world, has seemingly brought in unsavoury types who have been preying on the never-ending appetites of locals and foreigners lining up to invest in the market.A UK company which claimed to have acquired a 900-apartment plot in the proposed Jumeriah Village project, has reportedly sold off apartments in the plot, with no prospect of them ever being built.
The company, Strategic Property Investment, and its associates, William Cowe and Mark Emlick, are being investigated by Dubai and UK authorities.

Dubai authorities are also investigating the mysterious Al Areifi Tower being constructed at Dubai Marina. As we reported several weeks ago, Khalid Saud Al-Areifi & Partner Co., of Riyadh Saudi Arabia, sold several hundred apartments in the project off-the-plan some years ago, taking full payment upfront.In recent weeks the owners of the apartments have been receiving telephone calls and faxes from Al Areifi representatives in Saudi Arabia advising them construction on the project had stopped and would not be resumed.

Investors say they have been offered their original cost, plus interest, back. We have sighted one of the letters sent which verifies the investors’ claims.When we visited the site two weeks ago we found construction in full swing. We contacted the builder on site who confirmed there had been no disruption to the construction and it was proceeding at ‘full steam.’Reports are now circulating that Al Areifi sold the site to the newly-formed, Abu Dhabi-based, Eskan Properties.

A report in Gulf News , however quotes a company spokesman as saying, ‘We sold the tower on again a week back.’
Having bought their apartments and paid for them in full, well before construction started, investors are now wondering how ‘their’ apartments could be on-sold, on two separate occasions since.

Several calls to Emaar Properties, the master developer of Dubai Marina, where the project is sited, have not been returned.

Meantime the investigation into the conduct of the former CEO of Dubai’s second largest property developer, Deyaar, has been widened.
According to Dubai’s Attorney General, Essam al-Humaidan, a second person, Ganesan Krishna Kumar, 49, has been arrested in connection with the investigation. Kumar, originally from India, was a co-founder, and is managing director, of the Dubai-based advertizing agency, Masterbrand (ME) Ltd.,Two other men have also been detained and questioned, but have since been released. Zack Shahin, Deyaar’s ex-CEO is being probed in relation to claims of possible embezzlement. Deyaar has more than 1,600 apartments, as well as retail, and office complexes, under construction in Dubai.

The glitz and glamour of Dubai’s red-hot property market must be feeling the heat of the latest troubles, coming on top of the debacle surrounding the Damac project on the Palm Jebel Ali.
Damac, which claims to be the largest private property developer in the Middle East, sold apartments off-the-plan in what it called the Palm Springs project, a luxury apartments and resort project on the Palm at Jebel Ali.

Four years after launching the project, Damac wrote to investors saying it had been abandoned as the master developer of the Palm had changed the plans and the project could not now fit the site.Within days the master developer, Nakheel, announced it was unaware of Damac’s claims, and that the changes which Damac referred to had been made ten months earlier, and Damac was happy with them.

A hastily convened meeting by the authorities, involving Damac and Nakheel, resolved the matter, with Damac agreeing to proceed with the project. That action averted a class-action lawsuit against Damac by at least sixty angry investors, most of whom were from the UK

Comments

Comments on this story

By adel, 04-26-08, 02:31 AM
An advice on Duabai real estate marketI want to give a little advice to prospective investors in Dubai. Ignore those fantastic property offerings, with incredibly low prices and very long-term and low-cost finance. Believe me guys, the price of cunstruction material and labour, rents, oil…etc have made such projects unviable. Such projects are not economically viable anymore and the little investor will, at the end, lose his or her investment. Watch out !

By Anonymous, 04-24-08, 10:03 PM

Dubai property market beset by fraud claimsI have an apartment in this project which I bought off the plan and paid for in full. As far as I am concerned I am the owner and here I read my apartment has been sold to somebody else, twice! What is going on here? And what about the mighty Emaar. They are overall responsible. Surely they can’t sell these plots off to fraudsters like this and not even answer the phone???? Investors like me just sit out here and get these scraps of information from the news media (thanks! I’m not having a go at you, without you I wouldn’t even know I was being pick-pocketed). Where are the authorities? They shouldn’t just be investigating Deyaar they should be investigating Al Areifi.

By Anonymous, 04-25-08, 05:07 PM

Dubai should act against scamsWhere there is a lot of money the smarties arrive to scam the punters. This al areifi crowd have really done a number on people. The Dubai government shouldn’t stand back and let them get away with it. Selling all the apartments to individuals and then selling the whole building to somebody else is just straight forward theft and fraud. The Saudi Arabian authorities should act as well because this is a Saudi company. What confidence can people have in these gulf markets when this sort of nonsense goes on?

By Anonymous, 04-25-08, 08:09 PM

Few bad apples doesn’t mean you throw out the whole caseYes there are scams and frauds in Dubai, just as there are everywhere. Mostly though I think investment in theis place is safe. The government needs to stamp out the bad guys because it affects how people perceive the market.

By Anonymous, 04-28-08, 01:50 PM

These thugs have to be stopped. Whilst these guys are living the lavish lifestyle, we are repaying our loans to pay for them to do so. I am still pursuing these people and find it a huge disappointment that UAE have no laws against this or protection for people who invest from abroad. It was particualrly enlightening that these guys are residing at one of the sheikhs hotels.. Does that mean he thinks all of this is ok?????

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