A Swanley man is among four fraudsters jailed after they conned more than 100 victims out of approximately £500,000.

In May 2018, officers from the Falcon Organised Crime Unit launched an investigation into the gang after police enquiries established that Gift Mangava, of Hart Dyke Road in Swanley, was responsible for opening bank accounts by using counterfeit identity documents.

The accounts would then be available for fraudsters to store the proceeds of their criminal activity.

The investigation established that the accounts would be used for two types of fraud.

In some cases, fraudsters would place fake adverts for non-existent goods and services online. When victims would attempt to buy the goods, they were duped into transferring the funds into one of the accounts.

On other occasions, fraudsters would use specialist technology that would change the sender ID on text messages so it appeared the messages had been sent by a bank.

Victims would then be asked to provide personal information which would help the fraudsters gain access to their accounts and transfer their money into the bank accounts that had been set up by Mangava.

Police inquiries established that between May 24, 2017 and May 23, 2018, the four men worked together to defraud more their victims out of a total of £551,883.06.

On July 24 at Harrow Crown Court, Mangava was sentenced to six years and nine months' imprisonment after being found guilty at a hearing in June.

Sergeant James Tipple who led the investigation said: “These four fraudsters used sophisticated means to con innocent people out of thousands of pounds for their own financial gain.

“Our investigation has exposed their criminal activities and I hope this sentencing acts as a deterrent to others involved in this type of criminality.”

The three other fraudster's sentences are as follows:

Alex Scurtu, 29, of Ladysmith Road, Newham pleaded guilty October 2018 and was sentenced to five years’ imprisonment

Adideji Atitebi, 28, of Quebec Road, Tilbury pleaded in November 2018 and was sentenced to four years’ imprisonment

Darnel Morrison, 20, of Tintern Avenue, NW9 pleaded guilty in January 2019 and was given a suspended prison sentence of 18 months; he was also handed a community order.