Man pleads guilty following the Met's largest ever fraud investigation
A man responsible for running a multi-million-pound fraud website has pleaded guilty in the Met's largest ever fraud investigation.
Tejay Fletcher, 35 (13.12.87), of Western Gateway, London, appeared at Southwark Crown Court on Thursday, 20 April where he pleaded guilty to the charges of making or supplying articles for use in fraud, encouraging or assisting the commission of an offence, possessing criminal property and transferring criminal property.
Detective Superintendent Helen Rance, who has been leading the investigation, said: "I am incredibly proud of my team in the Cyber Crime unit who ran this investigation resulting in Fletcher pleading guilty. He was the ringleader of a slick fraud website which enabled criminals to defraud innocent people of millions of pounds.
"We are doing more than ever before to protect Londoners from spoofing and cyber fraud and devised a bespoke plan to reach out to victims who were targeted via iSpoof."
Fletcher pleaded guilty to running iSpoof, a website in which criminals and fraudsters were able to appear as if they were calling from banks, tax offices and other official bodies as they attempted to defraud victims.
They posed as representatives of banks including Barclays, Santander, HSBC, Lloyds, Halifax, First Direct, Natwest, Nationwide and TSB.
The total losses to victims of frauds enabled by iSpoof in the UK alone exceeds £43 million, with the total global losses estimated to be at least £100 million.
Detective Constable Ed Sehmer, said: “This investigation shows that despite what Fletcher and criminal online services often claim, that fraudsters who use them are anonymous, that’s simply not the case. Police can - and will - track down the people running and using these services.”
Thomas Short, Specialist Prosecutor for the Crown Prosecution Service, said: “As the leading administrator of the iSpoof website, Tejay Fletcher helped to provide fraudsters with the tools to cheat innocent people on a shocking scale.
“Fraud is an insidious crime and the cost to the many victims in this case has not just been financial; it has also caused huge emotional distress and devastation.
“We want to encourage all those who think they’ve been a victim of a fraud to come forward and report it.
“The CPS works closely with police to bring fraudulent offenders like Fletcher to justice and I hope today’s conviction sends a strong message to criminals that they can no longer hide behind online anonymity.”
If you think you have been a victim of fraud, contact your bank immediately and report it to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.
Fletcher will be sentenced on Thursday, 18 May at the same court.