News Business Crime & Financial Services 2nd May 2017

Narita Bahra acts for Barclays Banker in UK’s biggest Cyber Fraud Operation Kadenza

The Met’s cybercrime investigation into corruption across the banking sector and industry resulted in the arrest of a Barclay’s Banker in the Cyber Fraud Operation Kadenza.

Narita Bahra acted for Z who was a Barclays employee. The Crown alleged that he had opened 144 fraudulent accounts enabling over three million pounds to be laundered, as well as passing on sensitive details to those committing the Cyber Fraud in operation Kadenza in excess of £113 million.

Barclays Bank was a member of the The Cyber Defence Alliance, created in 2015 by a handful of banks to share information about cyber threats with each other and with law enforcement agencies. The Cyber Defence Alliance describes itself as “a co-located federation of banks and law enforcement agencies working together to advance sector security”. It adds that “an attack against one bank is an attack against them all”. “The ultimate goal is to support the sector to proactively detect and stop emerging threats, to share resources/expertise and knowledge to grow stronger together as a team, and to support law enforcement action against criminal networks threatening the industry and its customers.”  The venture operates out of an office in the City of London manned by cyber security staff assigned from each of the banks and police officers from the UK National Cyber Crime Unit. However, despite joining forces with rival banks and law enforcement agencies, Barclays and other banks have been unable to fend off criminal gangs in vishing and phishing frauds

After two years the prosecution offered no evidence and Not Guilty verdicts were entered on two counts of conspiracy to defraud and money launder in the main Operation Kadenza Fraud, as the Prosecution were unable to substantiate the tenuous link between the main conspirators and Narita’s client.

Z pleaded guilty to one count of entering into an arrangement which facilitated the acquisition, retention, use or control of criminal property, contrary to section 328 of the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002, limiting his involvement to £1.5 million pounds. He was sentenced to 30 months’ imprisonment. No confiscation proceedings were pursued.

Narita was instructed by Robert Borwick, Partner at ABV Solicitors.

To read about the case in the national press, click here


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