The United Arab Emirates (UAE) was used as a channel for the laundering of more than £100 million (€113 million), according to the National Crime Agency (NCA) of the United Kingdom.
Eleven couriers have now been found guilty as a result of the guilty convictions handed out at Isleworth Crown Court yesterday in the cases of Beatrice Auty, Jonathan Johnson, Jo Emma Larvin, and Amy Harrison.
According to sources, the network, which was run by Abdullah Alfalsi, who was sentenced to more than nine years in prison last July, trafficked more than £104 million (€117 million) between November 2019 and October 2020.
Adrian Searle, director of the NCA's National Economic Crime Centre, stated: "The laundering of such vast quantities of cash around the globe enables organised criminals."
"Cash smugglers typically work on behalf of International Controller Networks, who move the finances of the international drug trade, people traffickers, fraudsters, and other criminal groups, making the source of the money difficult to trace," he continued.
The couriers are thought to have received about £3000 (€3.4000) per journey. Due to the additional baggage allowance, they were scheduled on business class flights.
Members of the network would gather cash from criminal organizations around the UK and transport it to count houses in Central London.
After being vacuum-packed, the cash was distributed among 40-kilogram suitcases, each holding about £500K (€564K).
These couriers served as significant cogs in a big money-laundering wheel, according to NCA senior investigating officer Ian Truby.
"The crime group they belonged to was responsible for smuggling eye-watering amounts of criminal cash out of the UK," he said.
In addition to those who were found guilty yesterday, five additional couriers have previously entered guilty pleas and will receive their sentences in the near future.
By fLEXI tEAM