Dubai expat blocked from remittance due to suspected fraud

Published:  13 Jul at 6 PM
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Expats living and working in the UAE are being warned by bank officials over transferring money to people not known to them.

Armenian expat Donara Sanamyan faced serious difficulties after she’d attempted to help a friend from her home country who’d come for a visit. The friend needed to transfer money back home in a hurry, so Donara agreed to do the transfer for her through her regular transfer agency MoneyGram. The transaction was refused, with no reason given. A few days later, Donara tried to send her regular transfer to her mother, but this was also refused. She was advised to try again within a few days, but the attempt failed again.

By now, Donara was seriously worried, as her elderly mother is in poor health and needs the transfer to pay for treatment and medications, with MoneyGram the only service available to her mother. She’d never had any problems during the previous years, but a month later she was still not being allowed to remit the much-needed cash to her mother. She’d called MoneyGram via their hotline several times, but had been given no solid information as to why her regular transfers were being rejected.

Once the Gulf News got involved, the result was a different story. MoneyGram restored Donara’s account, assuring her there would be no more problems. A spokesperson was unable to give further details due to customer privacy, but commented the company may have been protecting her from becoming a victim of fraud. Later, it sent out a warning to expats in the UAE not to send money to people they don’t personally know. Donara is very relieved the issue is sorted, especially as she’s been a MoneyGram customer for 15 years and has always had an impeccable record.
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