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Over a Hundred arrested in £48 Million dollar scam in UK

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

#UnitedKingdom, November 25, 2022 – More than a hundred people have been arrested in a phone scam that duped more than 70,000 UK citizens out of at least £48 million.

The announcement was made by the Metropolitan Police on Wednesday after its biggest ever fraud operation.  The Met says it took down the website iSpoof which it is describing as  ‘an international one stop spoofing shop’.

Any criminal after paying via bitcoin, could use the website to ‘iSpoof’ or pretend to be someone else to steal data or money.  iSpoof worked by disguising their phone numbers so they seemed trustworthy.  After paying, criminals made millions of calls trying to trick residents into giving away one time bank passcodes or outright sending them money.  Fraudsters logged on and pretended to be representatives of major banks across the United Kingdom including Barclays, Santander, HSBC, Lloyds, Halifax, First Direct, Natwest, Nationwide and tax officers and other official offices.

“Almost 20 people every minute of the day were being contacted by scammers hiding behind false identities using the site,” at one point the Met said.

The site which was created in December 2020 came under investigation in June 2021.

iSpoof had over 59,000 user accounts and fraudsters were logging in  from the UK, The Netherlands, France, Ireland and several other areas.  Police say they are focusing on the UK violators that spent over £100 of Bitcoin to use the site first.

Detective Superintendent Helen Rance, of the Cyber Crime Unit said, “Our message to criminals who have used this website is we have your details and are working hard to locate you, regardless of where you are.”

The suspected organiser of the website has also been caught.

The initial 70,000 victims were to be contacted on Thursday but the police said as many as 200,000 victims were targeted in England alone.  The site was finally busted in an operation that involved the UK’s National Crime Agency, Europol, Eurojust, the Dutch authorities and the FBI.

The Met said losses could be far higher than the initial £48 million figure because fraud is vastly underreported.

Crime

PRESS STATEMENT: MINISTRY OF EDUCATION

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#TurksandCaicos, January 27, 2023 – The Ministry responsible for Education confirms that a recent report of alleged sexual abuse was brought to the attention of authorities at a particular school. For the protection of the child, we will not divulge details of this matter. We do acknowledge that there were issues experienced which resulted in less than appropriate response to the incident.

 The Ministry is continuing its investigation of the incident, in its totality and has since requested a comprehensive report on the response from all involved. Several meetings, visits and discussions were held. The key is to ensure that the minor involved is afforded additional counselling and care and that other students within the institution are also afforded the relevant support needed. The Student Support Services has been active in coordinating this response which is currently in operation.

 As an immediate further action, the Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) entities will convene and existing protocols will be reviewed and investigations conducted to determine the consistency of the response, exactly where the established protocols were not followed and the subsequent actions to be taken.

 The Ministry of Education, Youth, Sports and Social Services considers its responsibility for the Safeguarding of children of utmost importance. In so doing, the Ministry of Education has instituted a number of measures over the years to ensure that allegations of abuse to children in schools are treated with urgency. The creation of the Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) was created to ensure that teachers, leaders, Social Workers, and Police can respond to allegations with the child’s safety and protection as the core consideration. Child safeguarding remains the Ministry’s primary concern.

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Crime

Murder Victim Identified

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#TurksandCaicos, January 27, 2023 – The Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police Force have identified Ervin Glinton of Sand Bar Street, Five Cays, as the male who was shot dead on January 24th .

Based on preliminary reports, at around 3pm, the Police Control Room  received a call from a resident stating that gunshots were being heard in Five Cays.

RTCIPF officers responded to the given location at Reece Street and found Glinton’s lifeless body lying face down on the ground, with what appeared to be gunshot wounds.

The public is being advised to notify the closest police station or to contact Crime Stoppers and give any information regarding this murder or  any illegal activity anonymously.

Please note, that Crime Stoppers calls are answered in Miami and in Houston by Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers which is a non-profit and not a police agency.

The calls are anonymous and cannot be traced in the United States or the TCI.

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Crime

Kew Town Shooting

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#TurksandCaicos, January 26, 2023 – Two persons received gunshot injuries last night (January 25th) , when gunmen opened fire  in Kew Town, Providenciales.

Initial investigations has revealed the victims were – a 49-year old female and a 40-year old male.

The Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police Force can confirm the shooting occurred at a property on Black Crow Road around 10.02 pm.

Based on intelligence reports, the offenders used a Honda Fit and Nissan March vehicles in their attacks.

Officers from Serious Crime Branch are appealing for anyone with information, who was in the area between 9.30pm and 10.30pm on Wednesday 25th  January , to contact the Criminal Investigations Department Headquarters.

The public is being advised to notify the closest police station or to contact Crime Stoppers and give any information regarding this incident or  any illegal activity anonymously.

Please note, that Crime Stoppers calls are answered in Miami and in Houston by Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers which is a non-profit and not a police agency.

The calls are anonymous and cannot be traced in the United States or the TCI.

 

Release: RTCIPF

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