The Fujairah Appellate Court has ordered a young Arab man to pay a fine of Dh3,000 after he was found guilty of borrowing his friend's car and selling it without his consent for Dh25,000.
Earlier, the Fujairah Court of First Instance had cleared the defendant of the charges for lack of evidence.
The Fujairah public prosecution and the car owner challenged the verdict at the Fujairah Court of Appeal. The complainant’s lawyer requested the appellate court to the scrap the judgment of the lower court, and order the defendant to pay a temporary compensation of Dh51,000, as well as court charges.
The plaintiff told the court that the matter dates back to 2018 when his friend (the defendant) gave him a call, and asked him to lend his car for some official work.
“I agreed and directed him to my garage, where I keep some cars, and told him to take his pick.”
The defendant took an SUV, but one hour later he called the complainant and told him that his car had got some scratch. “I replied: 'As long as you are fine, no worries'. But later, he told me that my car was unfit for driving (cancelled) because of being involved in a big accident.”
The plaintiff would ask his friend if he was compensated by his company as he was on an official work, but he used to dilly-dally and mislead him.
“I gave a call to the traffic bodies concerned to check on my allegedly 'cancelled' car, but discovered that it was fine, and was not involved in any accident. I was shocked when they told me that it was being driven by another motorist.”
Later, the victim found out that his friend had contacted a car dealer who managed to sell the vehicle to a man (unidentified) for Dh25,000.
“He could not register my vehicle under the name of the buyer because the defendant told him that the car owner was not available.”
The car buyer told the court that he wanted to register it in his name, but the defendant was always evasive, stating that the "car owner was abroad".
“Four months later someone told me about the entire fraud,” he said, adding that he immediately returned the car to the complainant.
The appellate court cancelled the ruling of the lower court, and slapped the defendant with a fine of Dh3,000, along with court charges and the lawyer’s fees.
The case was referred to the civil court concerned where the plaintiff can sue his friend for compensation.