Press Release from Met Police:
Four men have been sentenced after an 8 month investigation focussed on an organised crime network.
On Friday 5th October four men were sentenced for their involvement in an organised crime network that carried out crimes in the Holborn area.
The four men attended Blackfriars Crown Court after being charged with conspiracy to commit theft between 1st February - 30th April 2012 within the jurisdiction of the Central Criminal Court from various victims contrary to Section 29 Criminal Law Act 1977.
They received the following sentences,
Gheorge Juverdeanu aged 32, DOB 21.05.80 of Lordship Lane N17 - Three years imprisonment and a 10 year ASBO banning him from coming within the M25 area.
Costel Paiu aged 28, DOB 22.02.84 of Faircross Avenue IG11 - Three years imprisonment and a 10 year ASBO banning him from coming within the M25 area.
Costel Lautaru aged 30, DOB 07.01.82 of Faircross Avenue IG11 - Three years imprisonment and a 10 year ASBO banning him from coming within the M25 area.
Eugene Todea aged 24, DOB 20.12.87 of Lordship Lane N17 - Two years imprisonment and a 10 year ASBO banning him from coming within the M25 area.
This excellent result follows eight months of hard work by Camden's Operation Newby team, a team dedicated to tackling theft, fraud and conspiracy to commit these offences in Camden.
These four men were found to be part of an organised crime network that had been carrying out crimes in Camden at cash points between 1st February - 30th April 2012. Two further members of this network have also been identified and are currently being investigated by the unit.
Following a rise in this type of crime Camden set up Operation Newby, a team of five officers, in January 2012. Since it began the team have had many successful results. Following the apprehension of these four men there has been a significant reduction in this type of crime from occurring at Sainsbury's cash point on Kingsway WC1V.
On 14th March, at about 10:30 hours, a 75 year old woman was using a cash point on High Holborn WC1V. As she used the machine a man behind her told her that she had dropped £10 on the floor. The lady bent down to check, at this point someone from behind her reached forward and took her bank card from the machine. Lautaru, Paiu and Todea were identified as being involved and were all charged with conspiracy to steal between February - April 2012.
On 8th March, at about 20:00 hours, a 52 year old man was using a cash point on Kingsway WC2B. After inputting his details into the machine he was tapped on the shoulder by someone behind him. The individual pointed out a £5 note on the floor and said the victim must have dropped it. The victim bent down to pick it up, when he looked back at the cash point his card had been taken. He immediately informed his bank, however found that about £280 had already been stolen. Juverdeanu, Todea and Lautaru were identified as being involved and were charged with theft and conspiracy to commit theft between February - April 2012.
On 7th March, at about 19:00 hours, a 39 year old woman was using a cash point on Kingsway WC2B. Whilst she used the machine a man behind her tapped her on the shoulder and asked if she had dropped £5 on the floor. The woman looked and said she hadn't, the man asked her if she was sure, again she said it didn't belong to her. The man then reached forward and took her card as it came out of the machine and then ran away. Todea. Lautaru and Paiu were identified as being involved and were charged with conspiracy to commit theft.
The four men are believed to have been involved in about 100 similar offences occurring in the Holborn area.
Detective Sergeant Paul Cheeseman, from Operation Newby, said: "This job is a testament to my team's dedication and focus around a crime type which has had little or no focus attached to it in recent years.
"Operation Newby was set up in January 2012 to combat this criminal activity and in its first year has succeeded in the arrest of over 100 suspects, who have received significant custodial sentences for offences involving theft, fraud and conspiracy to commit the same offences.
"It sends out a clear message that this crime type will no longer be trivialised and will be investigated rigorously."