DUBAI // Two Ministry of Heath employees who embezzled more than Dh200,000 by cancelling vaccination records from a clinic’s database and pocketing fees from residents have had their sentences reduced.
One of the two Emiratis, aged 28, was sentenced to five years in jail by Dubai Criminal Court, while the other, 26, was sentenced to three years. The court ordered that they be sacked from their jobs after both were convicted of forgery, use of forged documents and embezzlement.
They appealed the sentence and had the jail terms reduced to one year in prison each, though Dubai Court of Appeal upheld the order that they be sacked.
The duo were employed to collect fees from residents who had vaccinations before travelling. One embezzled Dh174,800 and the other Dh38,720. They also tampered with electronic documents between January 1, 2012 and June 10, 2013.
The 28-year-old cancelled a receipt by mistake after a resident had his vaccinations and took the Dh200 fee.
After a few months, he realised he could continue to cancel receipts and keep the money. After his co-worker discovered what he was doing, the pair agreed to split the money and continue with the scam.
“I taught him how to use the system to cancel the fees,” said the 28-year-old, who confessed in both courts to all charges but he said the amount taken was less than what was stated by prosecutors. His accomplice denied all charges in both courts.
An auditor from Yemen said he received an order from his boss to check for irregularities at the clinic.
“My boss told me he suspected staff in the clinic had been cancelling payment receipts and pocketing the money,” said the 57-year-old, adding that he identified the two inspectors as those responsible.
Source: uae news