Beggars belief

Man arrested for begging in Dubai was staying in a five-star hotel

A man arrested for begging outside mosques in Dubai was staying in one of the city's five star hotels, a government official has claimed.

The man, who was deported 17 months ago after being arrested for the same offence, has now most likely had to downgrade his accommodation after being handed over to the authorities.

The attorney general is currently investigating the case, Hashim Ali Darwish, an assistant director of the Dubai Department of Naturalisation and Residency, told UAE daily Al Bayan.

During his latest stay in the country, the man had sent three money transfers to his family in an unnamed Arab country over a three week period.

Authorities in the UAE and Saudi Arabia are planning a crackdown on beggars during Ramadan after a rise in the number of cases reported.

The economic downturn is expected to increase the number of beggars travelling to the region to take advantage of the holy month.

Ahead of last year's Ramadan, the Abu Dhabi police told state news agency WAM about similar cases of detained beggars having been found to stay in luxury hotels.

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