Four Individuals Jailed in UK for Defrauding Mobile Phone Companies

Four individuals, including three Nigerians, residing in the United Kingdom have been sentenced to a combined total of 11 years in jail by Portsmouth Crown Court for defrauding major mobile phone companies of £429,304.

The convicted individuals, identified as Oluwadamilola Bolaji, Taofeeq Balogun, Taiwo Agusto, and Carriba Johnson, were found guilty of orchestrating the fraud scheme after confessing in court.

Their crimes came to light when a Hampshire resident reported to the police that several mobile phone accounts had been opened in his name without his consent between February 14 and February 19, 2020. Contracts were fraudulently obtained from EE, O2, Vodafone, and Carphone Warehouse stores.

Subsequent investigations by Hampshire police, under Operation Waterspout, uncovered an organized crime group involved in high-value commercial fraud. The group exploited stolen personal details of existing customers nationwide to secure new phone contracts and acquire expensive mobile devices such as Apple Watches and iPads.

The sentences handed down by the court are as follows:

  • Oluwadamilola Bolaji, 32, of Gravesend, Kent, was sentenced to six years and three months for his role in the conspiracy, involving £145,000.
  • Taofeeq Balogun, 30, of Basingstoke, received a three-year sentence for his part in the conspiracy, amounting to £25,000.
  • Taiwo Agusto, 43, of Dartford, Kent, was jailed for one year and nine months after admitting involvement in the conspiracy, valued at £3,000.
  • Carriba Johnson, 31, of Southwark, London, received a suspended 24-month prison sentence for her role in the fraud amounting to £2,500.

The investigation also led to the seizure of numerous forged documents, including fake passports, bank cards, statements, and driving licenses, from the group’s residences. These items were used in fraudulent activities such as obtaining mobile phones and conducting bank transactions among themselves.

DC Owain Davies from the Hampshire Police Economic Crime Team emphasized that these sentences should serve as a warning to potential fraudsters, highlighting that fraud will be thoroughly investigated, and perpetrators will be brought to justice.

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