A Bollywood movie maker who is wanted in connection with the evasion of over £4.5m in VAT and film tax relief has been named on an inaugural list of the UK’s top ten most wanted fraudsters, which has been compiled by the newly established joint fraud taskforce
The taskforce was launched by then-home secretary Theresa May in February this year to bring together law enforcement agencies, the financial sector and government to tackle large scale fraud. Those on the list are linked to over £20m in losses in the UK and abroad and the public is being urged to provide information about their whereabouts.
They include Sandeep Arora who setup a production company with offices in central London while he lived in Beckton. Between 2007 and 2011 he made multi-million pound VAT and film relief claims for films entitled Billy the Beagle, London Dreams, Kuan Bola, Aagosh, Trapped and Kia the Dream Girl, but they either did not exist at all or he had no involvement with them.
The National Crime Agency (NCA) said he is known in the Bollywood film industry as Karan Arora and purports to be a film producer who makes films in India and Fiji. Arora is currently believed to be in India, and police say it is highly likely that he will continue to commit further offences until he is caught.
Others on the list are Bayo Anoworin from Nigeria who is wanted by Lincolnshire police in connection with fraud offences and money laundering. Anoworin, who uses several aliases, was part of an organised crime group which defrauded a number of NHS Trusts in the UK and Guernsey, stealing a total of £12m and laundering the money between 1 January and 2011 and 31 July 2012.
In September 2011 Lincolnshire police started to investigate the group and 15 others were arrested. Anoworin was arrested in Abbey Wood, London, on November 2012 and released on bail; he failed to answer his bail and has been untraceable since.
Alex Mckenzie is on the list with a warning that the Metropolitan police regard him as a ‘prolific fraudster’ who poses a danger to the gay community, as he used a gay social networking app to meet his partners before defrauding them.
Mckenzie is wanted for a range of fraud offences. These include obtaining credit cards, bank accounts, and loans in his partner’s parent’s names, and two former partner’s names with losses totalling over £300,000.
In order to perpetuate his frauds, and deceive former partners, McKenzie claimed to work for MI6 and even provided forged documents, uniform, and identification of his various pseudonyms. He is also wanted for diverting approximately £30,000 into his own bank account whilst working for the accounts department for a large multinational company.
Other fraudsters on the list include a man from Colchester who is wanted by the City of London Police for orchestrating a £700,000 boiler room fraud for which he was found guilty of despite failing to appear at court, and a woman from London involved in the fraudulent supply of immigration documents.
Cheshire Constabulary are seeking Romanian national with links to the Midlands, who is wanted for committing multiple automated teller machine (ATM) fraud offences across the country since 2012, while Manchester Police are looking for a man who defrauded vulnerable and elderly houseowners of over £100,000 by claiming to do roof repairs.
A British man who is believed to be living in the Philippines is wanted by police in connection with a £20,000 fraud where victims have been duped into paying hundreds of pounds for designer and luxury watches they never received, while a man from Hampshire is under investigation over stolen brand new mobile handsets worth £40,000 obtained by using fraudulent payment details.
Finally, the Dedicated Card and Payment Crime Unit (DCPCU) is looking for Faisal Butt of Pakistan is wanted by for conspiracy to defraud after compromising over one hundred customer bank accounts, which resulted in the customers having hundreds of thousands of pounds being taken from their bank accounts. Multiple banks were targeted by Butt and his criminal colleagues, who used the services of a ‘bank insider’ to pass themselves off as genuine account holders and open joint bank accounts linked to existing customer’s main accounts.
By opening these accounts they were able to obtain credit and debit cards and transfer the customer’s funds into their own accounts or reset the customer’s security details. An ongoing financial investigation is taking place to try and find where the money has been sent to.
Donald Toon, director of the NCA’s economic crime command, said: ‘The annual losses to the UK from fraud are estimated to be more than £190bn. Behind this headline figure lie the actions of criminals like the wanted fraudsters highlighted in this appeal, who have caused distress and loss to people and businesses up and down the country.’
‘It is important that anyone able to provide information on the ten fraudsters we are highlighting today takes the opportunity to pass that information to law enforcement to help bring them to justice.’