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Two men linked to criminal network selling stolen phones jailed for five years

Afiqur Chowdhury (left) and Niaz Mohammad were both jailed for five years

Two 29-year-old men linked to a criminal network selling stolen mobile phones have been jailed for money laundering. 

Afiqur Chowdhury, from South Woodford, and Niaz Mohammad, from Bethnal Green, were found guilty of conspiracy to receive stolen goods.

Mohammad was also found guilty of converting acquiring criminal property, and concealing, disguising, converting, transferring, removing from the UK criminal property.

Chowdhury was also jailed for converting criminal property and possession of criminal property. 

Both men were sentenced to five years imprisonment at Blackfriars Crown Court yesterday. 

They were connected to a criminal network worth more than £1 million by investigators attempting to reduce moped crime. 

Crucial evidence was secured when one victim’s phone was taken by a man on a moped in London in April 2018.

The mobile had an anti-theft app installed which allowed the owner to track it’s location. 

It also took audio recordings of Mohammad bargaining for a package of 16 stolen phones as well as pictures of him taking out sim cards from the mobiles. 

Officers executed warrants at four addresses, including Mohammad’s business address where they found notebooks detailing hundreds of mobile phones and their prices. 

At a cargo shipping premise they also found Mohammad had shipped thousands of phones, laptops and computers.

This led detectives to Chowdhury who handled the goods and laundered the funds secured from their sale. 

Between 2012 and 2018 he received more than £410,000 in cash and other credits.  

“Their illegal business would have created a demand for stolen phones, which would have in turn contributed to more crime and facilitated others profiting from it,” said Detective Inspector, Steven Brownlee.

“The investigation showed that they were the main players in a handling ring that generated hundreds of thousands of pounds in criminal revenue. The jail sentences they have received reflect the severity of their offending.”

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