Jailed Brit con phishes prison, gets bail

'Hi this is < name > please release < prisoner >'

A convicted British fraudster used a fake website and fake identities to trick prison officers into releasing him.

Neil Moore — jailed for fraud worth £1,819,000 — used a smuggled mobile to post a website mirroring that of the Southwark Crown Court. He then emailed prison officers with instructions for his release, according to reports.

Prosecutor Ian Paton says Moore, who turned himself in three days after escaping, showed extraordinary deviousness, according to this BBC piece.

"A lot of criminal ingenuity harbours in the mind of Mr Moore," Paton said. "The case is one of extraordinary criminal inventiveness, deviousness and creativity, all apparently the developed expertise of this defendant".

Moore followed the social engineering/phishing playbook to the letter, using legitimate personal details (including registering the Website in the name of Detective Inspector Chris Soole) in a bid to make the scam look legitimate.

His email, which replaced periods with hyphens, appeared to be sent from a senior court clerk containing bail instructions to prison staff.

Prison staff failed to notice the hyphens and missed a potentially scam-busting typo after Moore misspelled 'Southwark'. He was released 10 March, but only noticed as missing three days after, when solicitors turned up to meet him in prison.

Moore was charged with escaping lawful arrest and eight counts of fraud.

He was initially arrested in 2012 after swindling large companies including Thomas Exchange Global into handing over cash as he posed as staff from Bank of America, Lloyds and Barclays.

The targets were tricked into moving cash to what Moore says were 'safe' accounts under his control.

His mimicry of a female voice was so convincing police initially arrested his partner. ®

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