December 13 2013 Latest news:
Tuesday, January 22, 2013
A gang member who plundered elderly people’s bank accounts splashed his booty on designer clothing and luxury trips to America, a court heard.
Dulu Miah, from Sidmouth Street in King’s Cross, is accused of helping to mastermind a swindle which ensnared 218 people, siphoning at least £244,000 from people’s bank accounts.
He has admitted to blowing his ill-gotten gains on two lavish trips to Miami - staying in an ocean-view room at the Ritz Carlton on one occasion, and expensive shopping trips to Selfridges and Harrods.
On his shopping sprees between June 2011 and July 2012, Miah frittered away thousands on Ralph Lauren clothes and Louis Vuitton flip flops – to the tune of £1,000 a pair, Blackfriars Crown Court heard today (Tuesday, January 22).
But the 31-year-old denies being in the “upper echelons” of the organised crime network which targets vulnerable people and tricks them into handing over their bank cards and pin numbers.
Prosecutor Kevin Dent said Miah was at the “heart of the conspiracy” and spent the “lion’s share” of the money. Mr Dent said it was “inconceivable” that the Mr Miah was oblivious to the fraud.
A judge will decide the extent of Miah’s guilt at a hearing on Thursday (January 24).
Miah’s brother Shilu was found guilty of the same count of conspiracy to commit fraud and was also convicted of being in possession of criminal property, namely £14,000 in cash stashed in a safe in his room, after a week-long trial earlier this month.
The pair was arrested in July following a series of raids on homes in King’s Cross after more than 100 people had fallen foul of the swindle.
Victims had been conned by fraudsters ringing them up and pretending to be from their bank.
After speaking on the phone and getting vital details such as a pin number, a taxi was sent to the victim’s house to pick up the bank card and deliver it to the gang.
The card was then used to either get money out of the person’s account or open up a loan.
Police are still investigating the frauds.
Officers arrested two teenagers last Friday (January 18) after a man in his 90s was conned into handing over his bank cards.