Source : https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-tyne-56096251
A member of a bank’s anti-fraud team has been jailed for selling customers’ details in a £90,000 scam.
Bilal Abbas, who worked for Santander, helped conmen buy luxury goods using stolen account details.
The transactions would be flagged as fraudulent and cancelled several days later leaving businesses “out of pocket”, Northumbria Police said.
Abbas and two others, all from West Yorkshire, were jailed for at least two years at Newcastle Crown Court.
The court heard the bank employee used his position to secure the card details of customers while verifying their accounts.
He then sold that information to Umair Memon, 28, who used it to purchase high value goods by telephone under a fake name.
Jordan Hamilton-Thomas, 32, would then attend the stores in person, posing as Memon’s son to collect the goods.
The court heard the men used the details of 21 customers to target 13 different businesses across England between October 2017 and December 2018.
A Northumbria Police spokesman said officers became aware of the scam when a jewellers in Gateshead’s Metrocentre became suspicious after Hamilton-Thomas visited on three consecutive days to collect Rolex watches worth more than £14,000.
Police arrived at the scene while the fraudster was waiting to collect the goods but he assaulted an officer and got away.
Memon had also gone to the shopping centre and was arrested nearby after he was identified as an associate of Hamilton-Thomas via CCTV.
Pictures seized from Memon’s phone showed him and Hamilton-Thomas enjoying extravagant holidays, going on shopping sprees and even pouring champagne over Rolex watches, police said.
Det Con Patrick Naughten said it was a “large-scale scam” and Abbas “abused a position of trust”.
He said: “It became clear they had been living the high life at the expense of their victims and showed no remorse for those businesses they had left out of pocket.”
A Santander spokesman said the bank “actively assisted” the police investigation.
Abbas, of Park Lane, Keighley, and Memon, of Briarwood, Shipley, both admitted conspiracy to commit fraud and were jailed for two years.
Hamilton-Thomas, of Thirlmere Drive, West Ardsley, Leeds, admitted conspiracy to commit fraud and assault with intent to resist arrest. He was jailed for two years and two months.
Memon was also jailed for a further three months for unrelated driving offences.