Indian expats are being scammed over fake deportation threats in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Khaleej Times reported today.
The scammers, posing as Dubai immigration officers, are targeting Indian expats and requesting they wire large sums of money or risk deportation. Victims are asked to verify their own identification number provided by the General Directorate of Residency and Foreign Affairs (GDRFA) and then told they’re placed on a blacklist for deportation.
“It was an hour-long call, and there were three or four men who spoke to me. They said some immigration papers were missing from my file and they had orders to deport me immediately. They actually sounded like security officials speaking in stern and intimidating manner, and I really got scared,” an anonymous Indian expat said.
“They said I am blacklisted as per Article No 18 of the Immigration Law. And I will be deported and arrested in Delhi under Article No 20. And the only way to avoid deportation is by wiring Dh1,800 [$490] to India to hire a lawyer and get clearance letter from the Indian authorities.”
Other Indian expats have been scammed up to 4,500 dirhams ($1,224), while one Indian woman claimed she was accused of being a terrorist with links to extremist organisations, according to Gulf News.
The Indian consulate in Dubai has warned expats of the immigration scam. “We have received some complaints in the past. But one thing expats have to understand is no Indian authority will contact them directly on their mobile. They will send notice through formal channels or to their permanent address in India.”
Over two million Indian expats are estimated to be living in the UAE.