The gang were jailed after the scam was uncovered after several applications to remain in the UK were received by the Home Office which were all paid for from the same bank accounts. Promotion for the person who spotted that would be in order.
The applications were initially for long term residency, based on being in the UK for over 14 years and were followed by applications for residence cards based on civil partnerships between EU and non-EU nationals. The bank accounts were traced to a couple living in Birmingham – Sayed Ahsan Yousuf and Jabin Bi.
On 9th June 2011, Yousuf and Bi were arrested along with their daughter, Sounia Jabin, and an accomplice, Arfan Ali.
During the investigation it came to light that Yousuf, Bi and Jabin were also involved in benefit fraud and fraudulent mortgage applications. These were investigated by anti-fraud officers from Birmingham city council.
On 5th March 2013, Syed Yousuf, Jabin Bi, Sounia Jabin and Arfan Ali all pleaded guilty at Birmingham crown court shortly before their trial was due to begin. Three Vietnamese nationals, arrested as part of the investigation, also pleaded guilty.
On 27th March, at Birmingham crown court, Sayed Yousuf was sentenced to 4 years 10 months imprisonment; Jabin Bi was sentenced to 2 years, and Arfan Ali was sentenced to 19 months.
Sounia Jabin received a community service order – 100 hours unpaid work. Thi Duyen Luu received a 12 months sentence suspended for 18 months, while Phi Hung Nguyen and Ha Thu Ngo each received a 4 month sentence suspended for 12 months.
Sham marriage foiled
An Algerian man has been arrested just moments before he was due to take part in a suspected ‘sham marriage’ in Watford.
Acting on a tip-off officers attended the registration office on Hempstead Road on Monday 25th March. Just before the ceremony was due to begin, UKBA officers stepped in and the 28-year-old man, who had been living at an address Woodford Road, Watford, was arrested for being in the country illegally having overstayed his visa.
He had been due to enter into a partnership with a 31-year-old Hungarian woman, who was working in the UK as an exotic dancer. She later admitted to our officers that she was to be paid for going through the ceremony.
The woman was questioned by officers and released, while the Algerian man has been granted immigration bail so he can disappear amongst the 100,000 or so illegals hiding away in the UK.