Ramadan alert: Police warn of organised beggar gangs flying in for ‘charity’

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Undercover policemen will patrol mosques, commercial outlets, residential areas and banks

Sharjah Police have announced that it will crackdown on beggars during Ramadan and have warned the public to beware of organised gangs that bring in beggars for the Holy Month.

The Criminal Investigation Department at Sharjah Police said it has established a link between organised gangs of beggars and criminal activities.

These so-called beggars target holidays and various religious occasions, especially the month of Ramadan, to exploit people’s sympathy.

Residents are urged not to interact with the beggars even if they claim to have seriously sick children, whom they carry around draped in filthy clothes.

“What they claim are lies, proven by the fact that last year we arrested a number of beggars who were put up at luxurious hotels and who had purchased cars from the money gained through begging,” a police official stressed.

The Police statement urged people who want to help the poor to get in touch with charities and government agencies that specialise in helping the needy.

The police also urged people in need to get in touch with these charitable organisations.

A team of undercover policemen will patrol the emirate and operate around mosques, commercial outlets, residential areas and banks.

A police statement said the number of beggars arrested in 2012 has fallen to 212 as against 727 arrested in 2011.

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