Dubai World Sues Former Executive

Bloomberg News
Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Dubai World, a government-owned conglomerate in the United Arab Emirates, has sued the former head of its submarine-building unit in a U.S. federal court in Miami, accusing him of fraud and theft.

Herve Jaubert in 2003 told Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, Dubai World's chairman, that he designed and built recreational submarines at Seahorse Submarines in Stuart, Fla., the complaint said.

Based on his "misrepresentations," Dubai World made him chief executive of a unit called Exomos, created for "the design, manufacture and sale of luxury recreational submarines," it said.

Claims that Jaubert was an expert in submarine design and made vessels safe and "ready to be sold" proved false, the complaint said. The company also claimed losses of "tens of millions of dollars."

Jaubert is described on the Seahorse Submarines Web site as a former French navy engineering officer, a professional diver and a U.S. military contractor. Dubai World said Jaubert is a French citizen who lives in Jensen Beach, Fla. He could not be reached for comment.

William Hess, his attorney in Florida, said Jaubert sued Dubai World on Sept. 9, accusing the government corporation of reneging on financial promises, making him a "captive employee" and costing him "tens of millions of dollars" in lost opportunities and profit.

The Washington Post reported on Jaubert last month. He said then that he escaped from Dubai after being threatened with torture and being falsely accused in connection with the venture. He denied an embezzlement charge that resulted in a conviction in absentia in June and a five-year prison sentence, The Post reported.

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