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GANG BOSS JAILED FOR FRAUD SCAM

PUBLISHED: 17:31 02 July 2008 | UPDATED: 09:54 23 August 2010

CAGED: Carlos Ferreira.

CAGED: Carlos Ferreira.

A GANG boss who led a team of fraudsters as they stole £750,000 from insurance policies has been jailed for almost six years. Carlos Ferreira, 42, of Rookery Crescent, Cliffe, was jailed at Maidstone Crown Court for his role in the scam where the ident

A GANG 'boss' who led a team of fraudsters as they stole £750,000 from insurance policies has been jailed for almost six years.

Carlos Ferreira, 42, of Rookery Crescent, Cliffe, was jailed at Maidstone Crown Court for his role in the scam where the identity of an insurance company's customers was used to empty policies.

Judge Jeremy Carey, sentencing last Thursday, told him: "The public are entitled to know that those who criminally interfere with savings and investments should be punished.

"I'm satisfied the defendant did recruit other defendants and acted in a managerial role. You were knowingly and fully involved and must know take responsibility."

He added: "Those who suffer because of your crimes are those you leave behind - your wife, your children, your grand-children and your sick mum. You should have thought of that before you got involved."

Some of the cash, totalling £30,000, was withdrawn from Halifax branches in Dartford and Gravesend during the operation on October 12, 2006.

Ferreira and other members of the gang, led by 'underground bosses', were arrested later that day as police carried out surveillance operations outside the banks.

Defending, Louise Oakley told the court that Ferreira, who came to Portugal when he was seven-years-old, dreamed of becoming a professional footballer before knee injuries forced him to give up the game.

The father-of-four fell into a world of drugs and petty crime before racking up debts of £40,000 to mobsters in south London during the Euro 2004 football tournament.

The theft centred on innocent members of the Norwich Union Life and Pensions, where enough details were gained to allow them to contact the call centre to get more information and control policies and authorise their surrender. A false account was opened at the Halifax Bank using a phoney address and fake passports for verification.

About £500,000 stolen from 23 policies was paid in the Halifax and £250,000 withdrawn by Ferreira's five recruits who were sentenced in April this year.

While on bail for the scam, Ferreira admitted attempting to convert the proceeds of crime after a cheque for more than £91,000 that had been stolen from a solicitor's firm in Norwich was paid in to an account for the same crime organisation.

He was given four-and-half-years for conspiracy to acquire criminal property between August 1 and October 31, 2006. He received two years to run concurrently for possessing a false identification document with intent, and for converting the cheque he received 16 months to run consecutively.

In total, he received 70 months at HMP Elmly, 35 months in custody and 35 on licence, minus 113 days he has already spent on remand.

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