Three detained in Dubai corruption probe

One of the detainees is the former managing director of Nakheel's Waterfront plan.
Three detained in Dubai corruption probe
By Rob Morris
Wed 11 Feb 2009 01:14 PM

Dubai authorities investigating alleged fraud among local property companies and banks have detained three senior managers at Nakheel’s Waterfront development.

Two of those held are confirmed to be Australian nationals, who were detained after questioning on Jan.25 in relation to allegations of bribery, the Australian Foreign Ministry told UK daily the Financial Times.

One of the Australian detainees is former Waterfront managing director Matt Joyce, who was made redundant from Waterfront last month, it was reported on Wednesday.

Nakheel, the government-owned property developer which is building the Waterfront development, insisted it had no details about Joyce.

But the developer, which controls $80bn worth of projects in the region, admitted some of its staff had been questioned on fraud allegations last summer.

This latest investigation follows a year-long probe that has seen more than 20 executives arrested on suspicion of fraud.

Managers from property developers Deyaar, Sama Dubai and Mizin were detained during this period. Senior executives from Dubai Islamic Bank have also been questioned.

In recent months, several property companies in Dubai have axed staff amid the global financial crisis.

Dubai Waterfront is expected to house around 1.5m people when finished. The project is situated on the border between Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

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