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Proceedings begin in Amman court against former Drake & Scull CEO Khaldoun Al Tabari

Proceedings begin in Amman court against former Drake & Scull CEO Khaldoun Al Tabari

The public prosecutor in Amman has filed an indictment against Al Tabari, his daughter Zeina Khaldoun Al Tabari, and Saleh Mustafa Muradweij on several charges

A court in Jordan’s Amman has started proceeding against the former CEO of Dubai-based contractor Drake & Scull International Khaldoun Saeed Al Tabari, it was announced on Wednesday.

The public prosecutor in Amman has filed an indictment against Al Tabari, his daughter Zeina Khaldoun Al Tabari, and Saleh Mustafa Muradweij on charges that include the felony of committing fraud in buying, selling, or managing movable and immovable state or public authority funds.

The UAE’s public funds prosecution had accused the former Drake & Scull CEO of several transgressions, including appropriating funds from a public joint-stock company; squandering funds; profiteering and mismanagement, along with other financial crimes committed during his tenure as the company’s CEO and vice chairman.

The UAE Central Bank also directed banks operating in the Emirates to freeze Al Tabari’s accounts – as well as those of his family members – as per the decision of the Abu Dhabi Attorney General.

Khaldoun Al Tabari left the UAE with his family in 2018 and has not returned since.

He was arrested at the Queen Alia International Airport in Amman as he was departing Jordan to the UK, after Interpol issued a red notice for his arrest on January 7, 2020, following 15 criminal complaints filed against him by Drake & Scull, accusing him of financial transgressions worth more than Dhs4bn.

Read: Former CEO of Dubai contractor Drake and Scull arrested in Jordan

Drake & Scull collaborated with the relevant authorities in Jordan and government agencies in the UAE to pursue the case.

Procedures included investigations by representatives of Jordanian security and judicial authorities, as well as an audit of documents and investigations regarding Khaldoun Al Tabari’s activities during his tenure at the company, a statement said.

The indictment in Amman against Al Tabari and his daughter included charges of squandering sums of money and appointing an external legal advisor without approval from the company’s board.

“The company paid exaggerated legal fees to the advisor, who investigations later revealed was not a lawyer or legal advisor. The indictment also accused the Tabaris of disbursing unjustified sums of money to an entity, in addition to paying commission for the purchase of immovable property in Dubai’s Palm Jumeirah,” the statement added.

The indictment calls for them to stand trial before the Criminal Court of Amman.

However, Al Tabari, who served as DSI’s CEO from 1998 until 2016, had previously dismissed all the allegations, telling Bloomberg that he was being made the “scapegoat”.

“Somebody has to be thrown under the bus,” he said. “I am the scapegoat.”

Read: ‘I’m a scapegoat,’ says former CEO of Dubai contractor Drake and Scull

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