A five-strong Net fraud gang has been sentenced to a total of just under eight and half years for a conspiring to defraud online banks.
The four men and one woman made bogus multiple credit card applications with Egg, Cahoot, Smile, Marbles, MBNA, and SonyCard.
The gang, hailing from Buckinghamshire and Northamptonshire, were arrested by officers from the National Crime Squad in August 2000 after a six month operation. The investigation went under the codename Skoda, which makes you suspect the police didn't expect a speedy resolution to the case.
Detective Inspector Michael Ryan of the National Crime Squad commented after sentencing that "to facilitate their crimes the perpetrators used a combination of old methods with the new advantages the Internet has to offer. Valuable lessons have been learnt which have led to sophisticated measures being put into place to prevent any reoccurrence."
A police spokeswoman said the team thought they were making their claims anonymously, using false information, because the credit card applications were being made online rather than through traditional methods.
The National Crime Squad didn't use outside civilian computer expects to investigate and prove their case. The officer who provided all the technical knowledge to crack the case has now joined National Hi-Tech Crime Unit which formed six months ago. This division will investigate crimes of this nature from now on. ®
The people sentenced are:
- Jonathan Ellis, aged 28 of Honeypot Close, Milton Keynes was found guilty and was sentenced to 12 months
- Christian Palmer, aged 28 of Thrupp Close, Castlethorpe, Milton Keynes was found guilty and was sentenced to 2 years
- Lisa Ramsey, aged 23, of Clarence Road, Stony Stratford, Bucks; was found guilty and was sentenced to 15months
- William Ross, aged 37 of High Street, Blisworth, Northamptonshire, had pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing. He was sentenced to 30 months
- Richard Henderson, aged 25 of Newport Road, New Bradwell, Milton Keynes had pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing and was sentenced to 60 hrs community service