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Jailed: ‘Ghost brokers’ who supplied fake car insurance to Albanian drug dealers

PUBLISHED: 15:10 13 June 2018 | UPDATED: 15:15 13 June 2018

Raza Mir, left, and Muhammed Asif have both been jailed. Pic: City of London Police

Raza Mir, left, and Muhammed Asif have both been jailed. Pic: City of London Police

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Two ‘ghost brokers’ who supplied fake car insurance to Albanian drug dealers so they could conceal their criminality have been jailed.

Raza Mir, 44, of Plashet Grove, East Ham, masterminded the scam from his launderette business with the help of Muhammed Asif, 38, of Glenny Road, Barking.

Inner London Crown Court heard Mir let drug dealers use the laundrette’s legitimate address with fake names to obtain car insurance which would pass police checks.

The pair also supplied the drug dealers with counterfeit documents under the fake names in case police asked for further proof of identity.

Both were snared after their contact details were found on the phones of several drug dealers who were arrested by police as part of an operation targeting gang peddling cocaine.

The arrested men had been seen visiting the laundrette and several had fake car insurance documents with them when they were arrested.

Detectives teamed up with the Insurance Fraud Bureau and more than 100 fraudulent policies were discovered and 172 fake no claims discount letters were uncovered during a series of police raids.

Mir and Asif’s bank accounts were examined which found several thousands of pounds of outgoing payments to various motor insurance companies, as well as hundreds of thousands of pounds of undeclared cash income .

In addition £300,000 was deposited into Mir’s account more than £70,000 went into Asif’s various accounts.

Mir attempted to launder some of the cash by buying a £15,995 Toyota Rav 4 and paying a total of £89,734 off his mortgage in four separate payments.

Both admitted conspiracy to defraud insurance companies, and Mir also pleaded guilty to converting and/or transferring criminal property.

Mir was sentenced to three years and seven months and Asif was given 16 months.

Det Con Lee Johnson, who led the investigation for the City of London Police’s Major Crime Proactive team, said: “Ghost broking is a serious criminal offence, which can have various negative effects, both in terms of facilitating wider crime and the harm it can cause to the general public.”

Both men face losing their assets at a confiscation hearing which will take place at a later date.

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