9 August 2017
Property seized from online and credit card fraudsters who took advantage of vulnerable victims has been donated to a refuge helping women and children.
The items – which include televisions, games consoles and a home massage chair – were donated to The Haven in Wolverhampton after efforts to trace owners were fruitless.
The goods were recovered from crooks who orchestrated a scam that involved persuading vulnerable victims in the West Midlands to set up bank accounts, fake companies and move money to help their frauds.
If the victims resisted they were threatened.
Marvin Campbell, aged 28, and Henry Ogunde, aged 33, were jailed for eight years six months and five years six months respectively last year.
The pair ended up netting £730,000 of fraudulently obtained cash and goods in a variety of scams targeting major and small retailers as well as individuals.
The National Crime Agency worked in partnership with West Midlands Police and the West Midlands Regional Organised Crime Unit to make the arrests and recover the property.
Senior community fundraiser Jade Secker, of The Haven, said: “We are so grateful to the NCA for thinking of The Haven.
“Vulnerable women and children who are supported by The Haven have often had to flee their homes at a moment’s notice, leaving behind all of their personal possessions and items that make a house a home.
“Thanks to the NCA donating items like TVs and consoles, we can provide some comfort and a welcoming, familiar atmosphere in our refuges for women and children whilst they come to terms with the trauma they have been through and begin to rebuild their lives away from the fear of abuse.”
Rick Ward, of the NCA’s West Midlands regional operations, said: “All efforts were made to trace potential owners before deciding to donate the items to a very worthy organisation which has extensive experience of helping the type of vulnerable people that Campbell and Ogunde targeted.
“We hope the items are of use and bring some happiness in what can be very difficult circumstances.”