A burglar who removed his shoes to quietly stalk around villas as residents slept has seen his crime spree booted into touch after he was caught mid-heist.
The African man allegedly assaulted officers in a violent struggle in the kitchen of one house after being spotted climbing over the outer wall, Dubai Police said.
General Khalil Ibrahim Al Mansouri, Assistant to the Dubai Police Chief for Criminal Investigation Affairs, said his officers began receiving calls last month from residents who said they had been robbed as they slept.
He said: “The first call was from a villa owner in Jumeirah who said they didn’t hear or notice a thing during the robbery. We had more calls from the Warqa and Jebel Ali areas.”
He added police alerted patrols to look out for suspicious activity in those areas and at 3am one night police in a squad car spotted the African man wearing sports clothing climbing over a villa wall.
Officers encircled the villa before moving in.
“The owners were still asleep when we entered the villa and arrested the man, despite him putting up resistance to our officers,” Al Mansouri added.
He added: “The owners woke up, surprised to see us arresting the thief.”
Al Mansouri said the crook was found with expensive items in his pockets.
“He took two uniforms when he broke into villas and changed before he left [to avoid suspicion],” he said.
“He used to take off his shoes in order not to make any noise. He confessed to breaking into villas.”
Al Mansouri said the suspect took officers to a beach in Dubai and showed them a hole he used to hide stolen goods.
The man was in the country on a tourist visa and lived in a cheap residential flat in the Naif area of Deira, police said, adding that he cased villas for hours until owners fell sleep and then sneaked inside.
Police said in each of the cases owners had failed to close doors or windows properly.
The suspect has been transferred for prosecution in the courts.