Sixteen Filipino "gang" members faced a court in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on Monday for allegedly stealing valuable consignmnents from the Dubai Cargo Village.
The 16, who include two women, allegedly stole items that included Apple iPhones, iPads and iPods, according to a report of Gulf News.
Nine of the Filipinos, aged 23 to 35, were accused of abusing their duties and stealing the consignments from the storage area of the Dubai Cargo Village, the report said.
The other six accused, two of them women, were charged with aiding and abetting the other defendants for possessing the stolen items.
One of the suspects, 29, was charged with theft and pleaded not guilty when he appeared before the Dubai Court of First Instance on Monday.
However, his eight co-defendants facing theft charges pleaded guilty and admitted that they stole the consignments, the police said.
On the other hand, the six suspects charged with aiding and abetting a crime claimed before Presiding Judge Hamad Abdul Latif Abdul Jawad that they did not know that iPhones, iPads and iPods were stolen.
In a statement to the court, Emirati cargo operations supervisor said the Dnata group launched its own investigation into the incident.
The supervisor testified that the management noticed that too many consignments had gone missing.
"One of the footages exposed a worker stealing a consignment and handing it to others to sneak it out of the Cargo Village. The suspects took the consignments out of the gates without presenting ownership papers," the supervisor said in the report.
An Emirati policeman claimed that the first suspect arrested confessed how they used to steal the consignments and sell the items to people outside the Cargo Village.
A verdict will be heard on January 30. - VVP, GMA News