UK’s DCPCU dismantles 13 organised crime groups

The UK’s Dedicated Card and Payment Crime Unit (DCPCU) has dismantled 13 organised crime groups (OCGs) within the first half of 2019, double the number in the same period last year.  

There have been 39 fraudsters convicted during H1 2019, with a total of 44 and a half years in prison being handed out. The DCPCU seized £333,000 of assets from criminal gangs, double the amount seized in the same period last year.

One of the gangs stopped was based in South London and used compromised card details and ‘money mule’ accounts to commit nearly £200,000 in fraud. There were 10 defendants sentenced, including four money mules.

Another London-based gang had targeted an elderly woman and tricked her into handing over her bank account through a courier scam. The victim had been persuaded to put her bank cards in an envelope and put it underneath the doormat outside for a courier to collect.

Two fraudsters were also found guilty of scamming family-run firms of £120,000 by buying fireplaces and high-value goods with stolen card details.

One criminal was able to use fake IDs to collect £152,000 across the UK.

New head of the unit, Gary Robinson, has called for more action to prevent fraudsters using social media platforms to recruit young people as ‘money mules.’

Detective Chief Inspector Gary Robinson, the newly appointed head of the Dedicated Card and Payment Crime Unit, said, “These criminals are exploiting new technologies to commit fraud, posting adverts on social media to try and recruit money mules. It’s particularly shameful that young people are being targeted in this way by these fraudsters. Meanwhile, vulnerable and elderly customers are also being tricked into handing over their money through callous scams.

“We are showing criminals that fraud is not a soft target, by tracking them down and bringing them to justice. The DCPCU is improving our capability to investigate cyber-related fraud by working more closely with other organisations and government agencies in this area.

“We will also be stepping up our engagement with social media firms to identify and take down profiles used by fraudsters, and working closely with mobile phone companies to combat scam techniques such as ‘sim swapping’.”

DCPCU is a specialist police unit funded by the banking and finance industry which targets organised crime gangs responsible for fraud. It is comprised of officers from the City of London Police and the Metropolitan Police Service as well as support staff from UK Finance.

Since it was launched in 2002, it has helped prevent more than £600m in fraud, including £6.8m in the first half of 2019.

Copyright © 2019 FinTech Global

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