Neasden student jailed over stolen ID following police sting in Cricklewood

Thousands of pounds of documents sold on.

A Neasden student caught selling almost 40 stolen identity documents after police set up a shop to capture crooks has been jailed for two years.

The 23-of Elm Way, pocketed more than �4,000 after peddling 29 passports, six driving licences and four identity cards at the store in Cricklewood Lane.

Criminals identified the premises as a place where dodgy deals could be done - but it had been wired up with hidden cameras and microphones, with undercover cops posing as shopkeepers.

The business studies student at London Metropolitan University acquired documents from teenagers before selling them on to make a profit.

He told Wood Green Crown Court he turned to identity fraud to pay off his student loans. The debt-ridden defendant also has numerous previous convictions for violence, the court heard.

He sold three passports belonging to Hungarian, Ghanaian and British nationals, as well as a stolen driving licence on April 4 last year.

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Just two days later he offloaded a further four passports, two of which were French and Austrian, the court heard.

Despite a wealth of evidence against him, he initially tried to distance himself from the illegal transactions, said prosecutor Adrian Flasher.

“When he was arrested and interviewed he said he had only been in the shop twice, first to sell gold and secondly with a friend selling passports but he wasn’t involved,” he said.

“He maintained this despite CCTV stills of him selling the items.”

Venky Krishnan, defending, said the man's attempts to turn his life around with his studies had driven him into serious debt.

Sentencing, judge Shaun Lyons said: “These matters are so serious that nothing other than a custodial sentence must follow.

“You are an intelligent man but you have thrown it all away.”

The defendant admitted two counts of possession of identity documents with intent.