criminal law

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December 03, 2019

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Help! I think I've been scammed. What can I do?

Question: A person contacted me claiming I inherited a large amount of money from the estate of a distant relative of mine. He sent bank instructions to me to wire a payment to a certain bank account in Dubai to release the funds. I acted on his request and transferred the money. Since then I have not received any response from him. I think I have been a victim of a scam. What can I do?

Answer: The best idea would be to approach the Dubai Police department of electronic crime. They can investigate any documents you have relating to this matter, including the transaction, in order to establish what happened and if anyone can be charged with a crime. As per the UAE Penal Code (Federal Law Number 3 of 1987) and the Cybercrime law (Federal Law Number 5 of 2012), the offence of internet fraud may be punished with imprisonment, a fine and deportation.

Question: I have a bank account under my name in the UAE. Since I travel frequently, I am unable to operate the account. Can my wife operate my account on my behalf?

Answer: You may provide your wife with a duly notarised Power of Attorney giving her the authority to operate your bank account. Please be advised that each bank may have its own internal policy with regards to this. You should speak to your bank to get more information.

Question: I work for six consecutive days at a time as my department is operational seven days a week. When am I entitled to a day off? And how many days off should I get after every consecutive six?

Answer: As per Article 70 of the UAE Labour Law, Friday is an official rest day. However, an employer may request an employee to work on a Friday provided they are given a substituted day off or overtime. Additionally, Article 71 provides that the worker cannot be asked to work for more than two consecutive Fridays, although there are exceptions. It is the employer's responsibility as per Article 73 to communicate to their employees about the schedule of their days off.

Question: I am outside of the UAE and I learnt from a friend that I have a travel ban preventing me going to the country. I want to understand what my legal options are.

Answer: There are various avenues you can use to establish your legal status. A ban may be in place for a number of reasons, such as an outstanding debt or an immigration violation. One course would be to hire a lawyer to assist you in determining why a ban is in place and how to resolve the issue.

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