Criminals are devising ever more sophisticated ways to commit bank fraud, with incidents of courier fraud on the rise.
Courier fraud is where a person is contacted by telephone and informed by the caller that their bank cards have been used fraudulently and must be handed over along with their PIN as evidence in a police investigation. The caller suggests the person phones their bank to check the story but they unwittingly talk to an accomplice who poses as a bank employee. The caller confirms that a courier will attend to collect the bank cards and PIN as part of their investigation.
In a variation, the caller informs the caller that money is going missing from their bank account and they must immediately withdraw the remainder. They are told that a courier will attend their address to collect the cash and take it to a police station, however, the cash and cards are in fact stolen.
Greater Manchester Police have called courier fraud “one of the fastest growing financial frauds in the UK” with the Metropolitan Police warning that it is “increasingly prevalent across London and beyond”. Derbyshire Police have commented “recently we have had an increase in reports of suspected courier fraud”.
We are now seeing cases of offenders facing court proceedings for this type of bank fraud. Hussain Abdirahman, Imran Miah and Masum Uddin phoned victims posing as police officers. Abdirahman, 20, was sentenced to three years and one month. Miah, 18, and Uddin, 19, received sentences of 20 months each.
In Leicester, Thomas Simpson, 24, received a custodial sentence of two years after admitting ten fraud and money laundering offences. Brothers Dulu and Shilu Miah from North London defrauded £250,000 before being caught last year. Shilu, 31, was sentenced to six years imprisonment whilst Dulu, 26, received a prison sentence for four years and three months.
By Priscilla Addo-Quaye, fraud solicior
If you are facing criminal proceedings for courier fraud, or any other type of fraud, it is vital that you seek specialist advice. Our team at Stephensons has expertise in all areas pertaining to fraud and money laundering.