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Wembley fraudster who scammed people out of millions is jailed for two years

PUBLISHED: 08:51 09 May 2019

Nadeem Abbasi. Picture: Met Police

Nadeem Abbasi. Picture: Met Police

Archant

A Wembley money launderer has been jailed for his part in stealing millions of pounds from unsuspecting businesses and individuals.

Nadeem Abbasi, 48, of St Michaels Avenue, set up a sham company and opened business accounts, one of which received £1.9million on behalf of his gang of accomplices.

The 49-year-old pleaded guilty to conspiracy to convert/conceal criminal property following his arrest at Heathrow Airport on February 14 last year.

He was sentenced to two years and three months' months jail at Blackfriars Crown Court on May 2.

The court heard that Bonaventure Chukwuka, from Loughton, led an organised criminal gang that targeted businesses and individuals by hacking into their email accounts, and stealing large sums of money.

The 11-strong gang used computer malware to intercept and steal the log-in details of email accounts belonging to people and businesses worldwide, intending to identify high-value financial transactions.

They then intercepted emails about these transactions and sent spoof emails, duping the victims into paying the funds into alternative UK-based "mule" bank accounts instead of the intended recipient.

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Officers from the Met's fraud squad identified 228 separate frauds committed by the same network between 2014 to 2018, and totalling £10,112,312.54.

Manu of the 69 victims who provided evidence have been unable to recover their losses.

Eight fraudsters charged were jailed for more than 43 years.

Det Con Chris Collins of the Falcon Fraud Squad said: "This gang of fraudsters were unscrupulous, organised and prolific, and over a period of four years stole millions of pounds from unsuspecting businesses and individuals, and lived an extremely comfortable life with the profits.

"The frauds were brazen, and this gang clearly thought they could continue with their criminal lifestyle without detection."

He added: "I hope this conviction sends a strong message to online fraudsters: we have the ways and means of tracing you and we will seek to bring you to justice.

"We would advise anyone conducting financial business by email to verify the bank account they are sending their money to, by contacting the intended recipient and taking precautions to ensure the money is going to the right place."

For more information on fraud protection visit met.police.uk/advice/advice-and-information/fa/fraud/

To report offences via Action Fraud - call 0300 123 2040, or visit actionfraud.police.uk/

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