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|Four men who acted as the bankers and couriers for organised crime groups, laundering up to £13m worth of drug money, have been jailed.The men were involved in an intricate plot to bank and launder millions of pounds on behalf of these organised crime groups.|
Kamran Butt (born 08/08/1966), of Great Stone Street, Stretford, Sean Moore (born 21/04/1978), of Kingfisher Grove, Liverpool, Instar Ahmed (born 01/01/1958), of Kelstern Square, Longsight, and Stephen McKenna (born 10/05/1957), of Maley Street, Liverpool, pleaded guilty to money laundering at an earlier hearing.
On Thursday 16 January 2014, they were sentenced at Manchester Crown Court, Crown Square.
Butt and Ahmed were jailed for three years and six months while Moore and McKenna were jailed for 14 months, suspended for 12 months.
The four men, in varying degrees, played their roles in helping organised crime groups effectively ‘clean’ their drug money by laundering it through bank accounts.
The conspiracy unmasked by the Greater Manchester Police Money Laundering Unit showed these four men were receiving sums of money from criminal networks.
On Monday 22 August 2011, police intercepted Ahmed and McKenna. Three rucksacks stuffed with up to £200,000 in cash were seized.
The investigation revealed that about £11m had been laundered over a three month period.
On 16 September 2011, Sean Moore was seen in company with Kamran Butt in his Mercedes vehicle. Butt was stopped and a bag seized, which was found to contain about £120,000 in cash.
Butt’s Stretford home was searched and a further £10,000 was seized.
Detective Constable Paul Bayliss said: “This has been an extremely complicated and difficult investigation to crack, but I am delighted that thanks to the perseverance and tenacity of everyone who worked on the job, we have secured these convictions.
“When we unravelled the many threads of this investigation, we discovered was an orchestrated plot to launder the ill-gotten cash that organised crime groups were making from the drug trade.
“In convicting these men, Greater Manchester Police has made massive inroads into disrupting this organised crime group. These criminal networks are driven by money, so by exposing the way they launder their money, we have significantly eroded their power base and made it very difficult for them to operate.
“Greater Manchester Police is committed to disrupting and dismantling organised crime groups and tackling them from every possible angle.”
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