News Business Crime & Financial Services 18th Dec 2017

Sarah Przybylska and Lewis MacDonald prosecute boiler room Fraud targeted at elderly

Sarah Przybylska and Lewis MacDonald prosecuted six defendants for involvement in a large-scale boiler room fraud targeted at elderly people. The prime movers, brothers Anis Ben-Sghaier and Amin Ben-Sghaier persuaded a large number of victims to part with hundreds of thousands of pounds between November 2013 and April 2015, including one 79-year-old man who lost £190,000. Anis and Amin laundered the proceeds of their fraud through the accounts of their girlfriends and younger brother, who were convicted of money laundering offences.

The case involved extensive evidence taken from phones and bank accounts to prove the defendants’ knowledge and participation in the scam. The prosecution were able to show Amin’s involvement through evidence from a voice analysis expert.

Detective Chief Inspector Lee Morton, of the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate, said:

“This was a ruthless fraud, in which the defendants had absolutely no regard for the devastating impact they would have on their victims. Ten people lost large sums of their hard-earned money – in some cases their life savings and home – causing huge distress. One of the victims sadly died in January this year before seeing justice done. They trusted the men they had dealings with, who we now know were Amin and Anis Ben-Sghaier, who were convincing and persuasive. The five defendants benefited from this organised scam and spent money that was not theirs. It is possible that other people who have not yet come forward have fallen victim to this fraud. We’d urge anyone who believes they have been a victim to please contact Essex Police.”

Sarah and Lewis were instructed by Helen Harmeston at CPS Essex.

The case was covered in the national press – to read more please follow the links below:

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