Man arrested for scheming to get Bahraini nationality for 11-year-old boy

December 16, 2010

A Bahraini man of Yemeni origin who lied about the disappearance of his alleged 11-year-old son and prompted nationwide search efforts was involved in a scheme to obtain money fraudulently, police say.

According to police papers, the man had acquired the Bahraini nationality after he moved to Bahrain from Yemen in 1986. He then went back to Yemen and married three women.

His first wife died after she gave him 13 children, and he had 12 children from the second wife whom he kept in Yemen to look after his tired mother. He was able to secure the Bahraini nationality for the 25 children. He had six children from the third wife, but did not get them the nationality.

The police said that while he was in Yemen, the father of a boy named Hamad offered him 4,000 Bahrain dinars if he could get his son the Bahraini nationality. The man took 1,000 dinars in advance and forged a birth certificate and a passport to get Hamad into Bahrain.

He then presented the applications for the Bahraini nationality for his six children and for Hamad, allegedly as his seventh child. However, when he was told that the new procedures included a DNA test, he thought that it is better to make Hamad disappear and keep the applications of his six children. He hoped that it would not raise suspicions if her withdrew Hamad’s application.

The man managed to send Hamad back to his real father in Yemen and then claimed that ‘his son’ had disappeared and sought the police help in locating him.

His scheme was discovered and the man was arrested in a week while several campaigns were launched to find Hamad. On Tuesday, a judge said that he should remain in police custody for another 45 days.

The unprecedented case has caused uproar in Bahrain.

“People felt cheated and exploited by a greedy man who abused the trust of the nation and the compassion of the people,” said Maysa Yusuf, one of the campaigners who launched a BlackBerry campaign to find Hamad. “It is incredible how far people are ready to go to satisfy their greed regardless of the harm they can cause and the bitter feeling they generate,” she said.



About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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