top of page

Debt Negotiation & Interpol Prevention

Radha Stirling and Detained in Dubai have successfully closed hundreds of settlements with banks and business partners in the Middle East.  Banks in Dubai and Qatar are notoriously aggressive when a customer hits repayment issues, regardless of the circumstances.

Banks frequently open criminal cases against customers at the first sign of trouble then run civil cases in parallel to ensure the debtor can never leave the country, often forcing them into homelessness as they are unable to obtain a working visa while there are cases against them.

For those who have left the country, banks hound them using INTERPOL's database to harass them, extort them and to get them arrested abroad.  If that wasn't bad enough, they have threatened family members with violence or hounded debtors at their new place of work, causing them to be fired.

Debtors have been bankrupted in absentia or chased by local debt collectors in their home country, making life a living hell for debtors and their families.

While this behaviour would never be tolerated in Western nations, Middle Eastern banks do not have to follow local laws.  Banks like HSBC, QNB, ADCB, DIB and Emirates NBD have teamed up with aggressive collection agencies like Bilkish, Tahseel and Coyle White Devine to chase debtors abroad.

We have more than a decade's experience dealing with banks, their debt collection agencies, resolving personal and business loans, mortgages and credit card debts for customers.  We prevent Interpol Red Notices and harassment while resolving an agreement with these institutions that are otherwise intimidating, aggressive and frankly, criminal in their harassment and unfair escalation of fees.

When you need an expert, nobody is more experienced.


In the News

John Nicholas Testimonial for Radha Stirling  - Interpol Red Notice Removal from Qatar

John Nicholas Testimonial for Radha Stirling - Interpol Red Notice Removal from Qatar

John Nicholas was wrongfully listed on Qatar's Interpol Red Notice database by Qatar National Bank for a small bank loan which Mr Nicholas had almost entirely discharged by the time he left Qatar. QNB added atrocious charges to try to escalate the claiming amount beyond Interpol's minimum 15,000 Euro threshold for a Red Notice. Mr Nicholas was the victim of Interpol Abuse and is joining Stirling's other clients in a class action against Interpol. Related Press Release from July 3, 2021 here: Over the past three years, Qatar has significantly increased its use of Interpol’s database, leading to the temporary arrests of a number of foreign nationals in countries like Britain, Greece and Turkey. “It’s absurd that Qatar has been permitted by Interpol to use their database as a means to collect bank and credit card debts from foreign nationals”, said expert witness Radha Stirling, CEO of IPEX (Interpol and Extradition) Reform (Interpol and Extradition) Reform. Banks have pressured Qatari law enforcement to report even small debtors to Interpol, with a view to having them detained abroad and pressured to discharge credit cards and loans. This is clearly against INTERPOL’s charter and is a violation of their membership agreement but, as usual, Interpol would rather accept the donations from Middle Eastern countries and remain silent, than to punish them for abusing Interpol’s power and reputation. - An Emirati’s potential appointment as Interpol head draws criticism “These people are not being arrested because EU countries respect Qatar. They are being arrested because Qatar is routing their request through a reputable organisation, but that organisation is losing respect fast. “Conor Howard was recently arrested in Greece over an herb grinder. It was a joke and he was finally released after a worldwide campaign. Alan Stevenson was arrested in Czech where local authorities called it “an abuse of his rights”. British national, Steve Williams, was detained in Mallorca over a Qatar bank debt that had been trebled. - Stevenson detention ‘an abuse of his rights’ “We are pleased that we have today received word that a British national’s name has been deleted from Interpol’s database, but it should never have been there in the first place. It was another frivolous notice issued by a bank, portraying that the victim was some kind of seasoned criminal. Interpol allowed themselves a significant amount of time to review his case before finally removing it but there is no apology, no punishment for Qatar and no compensation for the victim. “The pattern of abuse and the history of corruption within Interpol should be sufficient for the elimination of their sovereign immunity. They are not acting on behalf of governments. They are acting on behalf of their financial donors, banks and influential private corporations and individuals. They have no right to claim diplomatic immunity”. “Interpol is complicit in numerous and serious human rights abuses and will soon be held to account. Interpol has become a pay to play organisation, open to manipulation and abuse by countries with poor human rights records. Countries like the UAE, Saudi, Qatar, Bahrain, Iran, Turkey, Russia, Egypt and China have been able to use the crime tool for their own personal vendettas. Countries like the Emirates have used Interpol’s reach to extend their jurisdiction beyond their borders, causing the arrest, detention and prosecution abroad of many innocent victims. Innocent individuals have been listed on Interpol, arrested, detained and tried for “crimes” that don’t even meet Interpol’s minimum reporting criteria. Journalists, activists, businessmen and credit card debtors have been locked up in Western nations at the mere request of countries who repeatedly take advantage of their membership with Interpol.” - Radha Stirling
David Oliver Testimonial - American lecturer held as Dubai debt hostage suffered stroke in prison

David Oliver Testimonial - American lecturer held as Dubai debt hostage suffered stroke in prison

The late David Oliver's sister Beverly Thornton. "David was arrested off the plane in Dubai due to a debt. He spent three months in jail with horrible conditions and thirteen months homeless in the streets of Sharjah. It's not until I contacted Radha Stirling from Detained in Dubai who advocated so strongly for David that within two weeks, David was released. I'm ever so grateful. So is his family, the rest of his family and David was so grateful to Radha. As he called you his 'rock star' and bless you, and thank you". Story: An American academic has been 'held hostage' in the Middle Eastern city state of Dubai over an unpaid debt for more than a year and suffered a stroke while behind bars, his family revealed Tuesday. David Oliver, 62, from Cincinnati, Ohio, was stripped of his passport and thrown in a prison cell by airport guards who allegedly bragged: 'Look, we got an American.' The creative writing lecturer had been living in Dubai with his ex-wife, working at the American University in the emirate. But after 20 years in the region he was locked up when he lost his job and failed to repay a $70,000 debt. The country criminalizes debt and banks and landlords can send someone to jail with a document showing a check bounced. Oliver's nightmare stemmed from a $70,000 debt he incurred when living in Dubai with his then wife. adha Stirling, CEO of the British-based NGO Detained In Dubai who is representing Oliver, called for the UAE to reform its financial laws. She said Oliver has 'zero chance' of repaying his loan, adding: 'He took the loan in good faith, but his circumstances changed beyond his control. 'If the UAE had operational bankruptcy laws, David would likely be home already. 'While there has been a lot of discussion over the past few years about implementing modern bankruptcy regulations, movement so far has been ineffective. Stirling continued: 'We are dealing with a number of people who are looking at spending the remainder of their lives in prison. 'Even the people currently outside of prison are not allowed to work and when whatever money they had runs out, they are forced to beg for food or rely on charity. 'Holding a debtor hostage in the hope they have a wealthy relative to bail them out is both immoral and unfair.' She added: 'When I spoke to David, he had clearly been emotionally damaged by the time in prison and the separation from his family. 'He could not see any way out but holds hope that he will be reunited with his family again soon.' 'Unfortunately we have many similar cases in the UAE with people who can neither pay their debts nor leave Dubai to seek employment elsewhere.'
Robert Urwin Testimonial - Detained in Ukraine over UAE Interpol Red notice

Robert Urwin Testimonial - Detained in Ukraine over UAE Interpol Red notice

A British man stranded in Ukraine for a year over a bounced cheque he did not write has returned home. Robert Urwin, 68, from South Shields, was detained over claims he wrote the cheque for more than £30,000 in Dubai 13 years ago. He was cleared and released in Ukraine in December 2018 but was unable to travel home because of an Interpol red notice that remained in place. The Foreign Office said he arrived back in the UK on Saturday. Mr Urwin was accused of writing the cheque on his personal account while in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). It was paid into a branch of HSBC in Dubai in 2006, a year after he left the UAE, when it bounced. Campaign group Detained in Dubai said the bank asked Interpol to issue a red notice, which notifies member countries that a person is wanted. Mr Urwin was detained in Ukraine and faced extradition proceedings before being cleared. He successfully argued he was the victim of identity fraud but was unable to travel home because the red notice had not been removed from Interpol's database, Detained in Dubai said. Radha Stirling, CEO of Detained in Dubai, said: "We appealed successfully to Interpol for the removal of the abusive red notice, and we received files from Ukrainian officials indicating that local police had no complaint against Robert in their database, yet he had still not been cleared to exit the country." She said it took more than 40 days since Interpol to delete the red notice, adding that the UK government "stepped-up" to help. HSBC and Interpol have been approached for comment.
Arabtec Liquidation sparks warning to leave Dubai or face jail - Radha Stirling Live Discussion

Arabtec Liquidation sparks warning to leave Dubai or face jail - Radha Stirling Live Discussion

Stirling warns investors to leave Dubai or face jail after Arabtec liquidation UAE government owned construction giant Arabtec’s liquidation has put thousands of expats at risk of imprisonment and Interpol red notices, warns Detained in Dubai CEO Radha Stirling. Stirling warned investors to leave Dubai in a Facebook live broadcast today, issuing the following statement: “Whenever a UAE construction entity goes bust, expats go to jail. This is exactly what happened in 2009, and exactly what we will see now. UAE government owned Arabtec has voted to liquidate, leaving $18 billion worth of projects under construction, a disaster for the perhaps thousands of expats who had deals with Arabtec. “Arabtec will be completely protected from consequences with bankruptcy laws providing protection as well as, of course, the government itself. When the banks get into financial trouble, they are bailed out and it is the same with government owned construction companies. Given the UAE’s economic meltdown this year, one would hope that the same safetynet Arabtec enjoys, would also be provided down the chain of companies who rely on Arabtec. “As Arabtec sinks, it will fail to pay companies and individuals who rely upon the income for their survival. In turn, they will default on their obligations, but none of them will be able to seek protection under the UAE’s bankruptcy laws because frankly, they are a joke. Instead, when they default, they will be criminally prosecuted and jailed then later, sued in the civil courts and forced to remain in the UAE until the judgment is paid. They will not be allowed to work though because their passports will be confiscated and their visas cancelled. They will simply be stuck, forever. “Expats, workers and entrepreneurs who may be put in a position where they can’t meet all of their obligations, should not hesitate to leave the UAE as soon as possible or consider they could be making a lifetime choice to be stuck in the country indefinitely. You can not reason with the courts, you can not justify or explain your circumstances. If you can not pay a supplier, a staff member, a bank or even a landlord, you face a lifetime sentence in the unforgiving Emirates. “Those who do leave their Dubai lives behind, have not won. They have lost their dream, their hard work and investment and are at great risk of being listed on Interpol’s Red Notice database which has long been misused as a debt collection tool by the Gulf state. At least though, they will have their freedom. “We saw a mass exodus of expats in 2009, with luxury homes and cars abandoned at airports. These were the individuals who knew Dubai criminalised defaulters, no matter the circumstances, even where directly caused by the UAE government itself. This is still the case. The real victims of Arabtec’s insolvency will be heard for years to come. The UAE remains one of the riskiest places in the world to do business where someone else’s mistake, can land you in jail.”
UAE Coronavirus crisis to hit expats - Interpol, Debt, Police cases to follow

UAE Coronavirus crisis to hit expats - Interpol, Debt, Police cases to follow

Expats in Dubai should prepare for consequences of Coronavirus prevention measures The repercussions for expats in the UAE from the country’s lockdown to prevent the spread of Coronavirus are expected to be severe and could impact their lives for years to come. “From direct loss of employment due to government restrictions and indefinite closures of businesses, to the inevitability of bounced cheques resulting in criminal prosecutions because of compulsory quarantines and travel prohibitions; we are extremely concerned about the consequences to expats in the Emirates,” says Radha Stirling, CEO of Detained in Dubai and founder of Due Process International, which address the plight of foreigners embroiled in questionable legal systems around the world. “As of now, the UAE government is discouraging people from going out, advising offices to close, and several high-profile events have been cancelled or indefinitely postponed. The trajectory appears to be in the direction of a potential lockdown. If a business is regarded as nonessential by the government, it may be compelled to suspend its operations.” Stirling explains, “Obviously, forced work stoppages will delay delivery of contractual obligations, and this can very quickly lead to false accusations of fraud or breach of trust. Furthermore, most companies in the UAE do business with global clients and suppliers; lockdowns being imposed in countries around the world are bound to disrupt their businesses, potentially with devastating effect.” Stirling warned that normal interruptions and delays that occur in business, and the usual financial ups and downs companies experience, can be catastrophic in the UAE. “It is a very different culture, and there is almost zero flexibility among lenders, and local business partners and sponsors expect to be paid even if the company is going through difficult times. All of these types of issues become criminal cases in the UAE very rapidly, and we have not seen the courts ever take mitigating circumstances into consideration, so the fallout from the Coronavirus measures are likely to be massive, and expats are going to bear the brunt of it.” Historically, Stirling notes, banks in the UAE respond to global crises by calling in long term loans and abruptly shutting down lines of credit. “There was a huge spike in civil and criminal cases against expats initiated by banks in the wake of the Global Financial Crisis, because lenders were breaking the agreed upon long term instalment contracts and compelling people to pay off debts immediately in lump sums. Because the UAE requires security cheques as collateral, the banks would cash those cheques when debtors couldn’t pay the total amount all at once; these cheques bounced, and banks filed criminal complaints. The economic impact of the Corona Virus is already considerable, and there is every possibility that it may dwarf the crisis of 2009. Anyone with credit cards, bank loans, or other financial instruments from banks in the UAE should anticipate problems.” Amidst Coronavirus, and the subsequent prevention policies, many expats in the UAE who face job loss or dwindling opportunities, or simply out of concern for loved ones back home, return to their country of origin, potentially leaving behind outstanding debts. “Even if people have every intention of paying back what they owe once their financial situation stabilises, and even if they maintain constant communication with lenders, they are still likely to be slapped with a criminal complaint, a conviction in absentia, and then reported to Interpol,” Stirling cautions. “The UAE is one of the world’s top abusers of the Interpol Red Notice system, reporting dozens of debtors per month, despite the fact that these are private financial disputes. A Red Notice can ruin someone’s life, seriously impede their careers and the ability to earn money to pay back their debts. This is why we try to intervene on clients’ behalf before matters escalate to that level; but if they do escalate, we have also been tremendously successful in having these abusive Red Notices removed. It is crucial for expats to understand just how quickly issues like this can spiral out of control in the UAE, and we strongly advise people to secure professional assistance ahead of any legal complications.”
Radha Stirling discusses Interpol Abuse

Radha Stirling discusses Interpol Abuse

Interpol is continually abused by its member states who allow citizens to inappropriately report others. It is common in the gulf states to report people to Interpol for private matters, civil matters and even for credit card debt. The ability to do this has created a culture where business partners, banks and even Landlords are using the database to their financial advantage, as a means to extort funds or pressure a settlement. The gulf member states' legal systems allow it to happen. The process to clear one's name from Interpol is long and complex and is a nightmare to the victim. It is frightening and can lead to the loss of employment, loss of income, inability to travel and even arrest. Victims of Interpol abuse, in some cases, have been arrested multiple times, detained then released. We saw a man detained for three weeks in #Germany and another for one week in #Greece. It can depend on how experienced the country is in dealing with these kinds of reports. Germany seemingly had little idea of what their role was in these circumstances. Interpol is an "international organisation" with no tangible accountability, operating with immunity. Therefore, they have little incentive to address these issues and little incentive to speed up their removal review process. They are funded by their members and private corporations which can create a conflict of interest. We have managed Interpol Removal applications for close to a decade. We have made the world aware of the way in which Interpol is being abused and lobby for change and improvements. INTERPOL HQ. #Interpol #InterpolAbuse #Extradition #UAE #Qatar #Saudi #Jordan #UAELaw #Dubai #Law #Lawyer
bottom of page