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Police net gangs over Dh15m theft spree

DUBAI // Police have ended burglary sprees in which two gangs stole Dh15 million worth of jewellery and other goods from 36 homes around the UAE.

Seven Colombians, a Mexican and an American were caught this month and accused of burgling houses in Jumeirah, Emirates Hills, Al Safa, Al Rashidiya and Arabian Ranches, and homes in other emirates.

“The gangs would target homes whose residents were on vacation, or that were vacant,” said Dubai Police chief Maj Gen Khamis Al Muzeina. “The first gang is accused of robbing 14 homes in Dubai and nine in other emirates. The second is accused of robbing seven in Dubai and six in other emirates.”

Gen Al Muzeina said the gangs were not directly linked but were both in contact with someone in an unidentified Asian country.

He said the first gang, of five Colombians, took jewellery, gold and 120 luxury watches.

“We learnt that two Sudanese men, one of whom was born and raised in the UAE, provided the gang with logistical support,” Gen Al Muzeina said.

The two were arrested at their home in Sharjah. Police said they contacted the gang on Facebook to tell them of homes that were empty, and rented a flat and car for them. They identified the members, who were arrested in Oman and brought back.

Officers seized goods worth more than Dh10m, some of which were hidden in toys. The five confessed, police said.

The second gang – the American, Mexican and two Colombians – were arrested on July 8 after police received a complaint about a burglary in Jumeirah.

Maj Gen Khalil Al Mansouri, deputy chief of Dubai CID, said police identified the suspects, who were staying in Al Nahda, Sharjah, within four hours of the report. They had rented two cars using fake passports.

The American and one Colombian were arrested in their flat, while the Mexican and the other Colombian were caught trying to leave the country.

All nine have been referred to prosecutors.

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(via The National)