Five men have been sentenced after police uncovered a fake bank and credit card factory in Holloway.
Officers from the Met’s Falcon (Fraud and Linked Crime Online) Taskforce Unit were alerted to the fraudulent activity after receiving information that false bank and credit cards being used and supplied across mainland Europe were linked to a particular UK phone number.
Detectives identified that the phone number belonged to Gabriel Yew and then found an address in Mayton Street they suspected he was using to produce the fake cards.
Through their proactive enquiries, officers identified a second suspect – King Mensah. Following Mensah’s arrest in May, officers searched his home in Hertford Road, Enfield where they found several false credit cards and ID documents bearing Mensah’s photo, but all in different names.
After further enquiries, Yew was arrested outside the address in Mayton Street on Wednesday, 15 June. Officers seized the phone he was using and searched the flat Yew was en route to, where they found thousands of blank cards as well as several printing and embossing machines that were being using to produce fake bank and credit cards.
Officers also searched Yew’s car and his home in Hornsey Road where they found more blank cards and printing machines linked to the production of false documents, as well as almost £5,000 in cash and two stun guns disguised as torches. Officers also discovered high-value goods including luxury handbags and watches.
When detectives examined Yew’s mobile phones they found conversations with details of orders being placed for fake cards. Officers found details of other individuals who contacted Yew to obtain fake bank cards and three men – Lamarl Brown, Kofi Gyateng and Christopher Tansey – were identified and questioned in August. When he was arrested, Tansey was found in possession of several false ID documents with his photo and bank cards in other names.
Detective Chief Inspector Andy Gould, from Falcon, said: “Gabriel Yew supplied fake credit cards in bulk for criminals all over London. The excellent and painstaking detective work of the Metropolitan Police’s Falcon Taskforce identified Yew and his card factory then gathered sufficient high quality evidence to convict these defendants at court. This shows our determination to tackle the organised criminal gangs in London committing large scale fraud offences.”
The five men pleaded guilty to various offences and were all sentenced at Blackfriars Crown Court on Wednesday, 30 November. They are:
Gabriel Yew, 45 (31.08.71), of Hornsey Road, N7, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to supply articles for use in fraud, one count of making articles for use in fraud, one count of supplying articles for use in fraud, two counts of possession of articles for use in fraud and one count of possessing prohibited weapons – two stun guns – and was sentenced to five years and six months’ imprisonment.
King Mensah, 26 (15.05.90), of Hertford Road, Enfield pleaded guilty to one count of possession of articles for use in fraud, six counts of possession of an identity document with improper intention and three counts of fraud and was sentenced to 16 months’ imprisonment.
Christopher Tansey, 30 (29.07.86), of Warrington Crescent, Maida Vale pleaded guilty to two counts of possession of an identity document with improper intention and four counts of possession of articles for use in fraud and was sentenced to 26 months’ imprisonment.
Kofi Gyateng, 26 (13.04.90), of Kessock Close, Tottenham pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit fraud by false representation and was sentenced to 12 months’ imprisonment (suspended for 12 months) and ordered to carry out 150 hours’ unpaid community work.
Lamarl Brown, 25 (30.12.90), of Heaton Way, Romford pleaded guilty to one count of possessing articles for use in fraud and was sentenced to 16 months’ imprisonment (suspended for 12 months) and ordered to carry out unpaid community work (number of hours yet to be determined).