Third person sentenced after fraud against two high street banks
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A third person has been sentenced today (Wednesday 23 December) for his part in duping a number of bank customers out of thousands of pounds.
Between February and June 2017 five defendants were involved in 19 reports of fraud which targeted Halifax and Lloyds TSB bank customers.
The defendants used legitimate customer account information and false identification to defraud customer accounts.
The money was then subsequently used to purchase high value watches and foreign currency worth more than £350,000.
Ahmad Laher and Haroon Isseharoon were instrumental in executing the frauds. Laher coached and managed Yvonne Rankine who would attend banks in various parts of the country and impersonate the legitimate bank account holder.
Rankine was furnished with false identify documents and met up with third parties whose current accounts were used to link both accounts. Issaharoon was also involved in directing Rankine.
Zakkaria Sehailia provided the false documents and Mohamed Jama drove Rankine to the banks on several occasions.
Today Jama, 24, of Arnold Street, Leicester, was given a 12 month prison sentence suspended for two years after pleading guilty to fraud by false representation at a hearing in October.
Earlier this month two of the defendants were sentenced at Leicester Crown Court after being convicted at earlier hearings:
Rankine, 44, of Sedbergh Road, Corby, Northamptonshire, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit fraud at a hearing in January and was sentenced to two years and four months in prison.
Sehailia, 25, of St Georges Road, Forest Gate, London, was found guilty of conspiracy to commit fraud after a trial in October and was sentenced to three years and six months in prison.
Two other men, Laher, 27, of Oadby, Leicester, and Issaharoon, 28, of Market Place, Dewsbury, West Yorkshire, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit fraud at earlier hearings. They are due to be sentenced at a later date.
Detective Constable Matthew Swift from the force’s Economic Crime Unit, said: “This was a complex and lengthy investigation involving a number of bank customers and two leading high street banks”.
“With the assistance of the City of London’s Joint Fraud Taskforce Collective Response we were able to bring this investigation to a successful conclusion.
“The taskforce is a multi-agency unit established to investigate cross border fraud. The force took the lead on the investigation due to the number of offences which occurred in the city and county. During the two-year investigation a number of people were arrested across the country and numerous interviews were conducted.
"These individuals were part of an organised gang whose purpose was to commit large number of fraud against financial organisations, accounts belonging to innocent members of the public were used to ‘piggyback’ the customers’ accounts. Fortunately those customers who were defrauded have received their money back via the financial institutions, but ultimately the victims of these offences are now those banks who were targeted.
“We are pleased with the outcome of this investigation and hope it goes someway in reassuring the public that we will leave no stone unturned to bring people to justice, no matter how careful offenders think they were at covering their tracks.”
Neil Taylor, from the City of London Police and co-chair of the Joint Fraud Taskforce Collective Response, said: “This case is an excellent example of collaborative working from the Joint Fraud Taskforce Collective Response as a result of shared intelligence. UK Finance pulled together an excellent intelligence package, with assistance from the City of London Police’s National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB) and the banking industry, which led to Leicestershire Police successfully apprehending these criminals.
“This is a superb result for the Joint Fraud Taskforce Collective Response and emphasises that law enforcement cannot tackle this problem alone. It is only by working together with a common purpose, using initiatives like the taskforce, that we can fight these criminals and protect the UK against fraud.”