Construction

Dubai developer wanted in Germany over alleged fraud

Authorities in Germany are seeking the arrest of a German national on suspicion of a multi-million-euro fraud in connection with a Dubai hotel project that was never built.

Authorities in Germany are seeking the arrest of a German national on suspicion of a multi-million-euro fraud in connection with a Dubai hotel project that was never built, reported The National newspaper.

A court in Dortmund issued an arrest warrant in November for the developer Georg Recker, who is in Dubai and has denied any wrongdoing.

Investors are said to have provided about €25 million (US $33 million) for Recker’s Dubai 1000 Hotel Fonds towards building a 1050-room, four-star hotel in Dubailand. The project was planned to be one of the largest hotels in the Middle East and was to have been completed by 2007. Recker’s property fund was set up in 2005 and was trying to raise €142 million ($191 million).

In the prospectus provided to investors, Recker requested a minimum investment of €10,000 ($13 million). Five years after the project was launched, however, there is nothing but a hole in the ground at the site in Dubailand.

The prosecutor’s office in Dortmund, Germany, confirmed that a warrant had been issued for Recker’s arrest.  Recker denied there was an arrest warrant for him. He also claimed that work on the hotel project was continuing.

“Everything in Dubailand is delayed,” he said. “There is no infrastructure, no power, no electricity. What we are doing will definitely [continue], but it will take two to three years.” About 70 of the 900 investors in the fund are also taking legal action against Recker in Germany. KWAG, a law firm based in Hamburg, is representing the investors. Recker, 36, also denied the existence of the lawsuit.

The construction consultancy Drees and Sommer International had been taken on to manage the hotel project, and Dewan Architects and Engineers was providing architectural consultancy services.

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