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Man caught after three years on the run over £9m money laundering racket

A man who was part of a gang which laundered more than £9 million worth of ‘dirty’ money has been caught after three years on the run.

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Jagdish Brar, of no fixed abode, was convicted in February 2018 for conspiring to launder money from crime between January 1, 2013 and May 14, 2015 and was handed four years six months in jail.

Wolverhampton Crown Court heard at the time that officers swooped on two cash exchanges totalling £100,000 that had been masterminded from overseas and took place on the streets of Blakenhall.

A further £140,000 – bound up in bundles of £20 and £10 notes – was found hidden at the home of taxi driver Jitender Sidhu in Kenilworth Crescent, Parkfields, Wolverhampton.

He was involved in both the handovers observed by police on May 13, 2015.

The 40-year-old gave £60,000 to Harminder Singh, who had driven to the rendezvous from his Northamptonshire home and had the cash in his BMW when stopped by police soon after.

Four hours later Sidhu went to another exchange, which his friend Nardeep Sodhi, 34, from Waterside Close, Parkfields took part in with 58-year-old Jagdish Brar, who had also come from Northamptonshire to collect money.

Both were with Sidhu in his parked Passat when police pounced and found £40,000 stuffed in a carrier bag at the feet of Sodhi.

The rest of the cash was discovered at Sidhu’s home along with an electronic money counter and paperwork that gave vital clues to the scale of the racket and how it was run.

The serial number of a bank note was given by the collector to the deliverer as proof of identity and kept as a receipt of the transaction.

This triggered a complex two-year investigation.

Analysis of phones used by the gang revealed links to the Netherlands and an Indian phone number used by controllers of the organisation.

Text messages gave the postcode of meeting places and serial numbers of bank notes used as ‘tokens’ in the cash exchanges.

Around 250 of these were discovered at the home of Sidhu.

Singh from Backley Close, Kettering, and Sidhu pleaded guilty to conspiring to launder money from crime between January 1, 2013 and May 14, 2015 and were jailed for four years and five years eight months respectively.

Brar who was at the time on the run – and Sodhi were convicted of the offence and received terms of four years six months and five years respectively.

Brar, now aged 60, was arrested in the Black Country this week and appeared at Wolverhampton Magistrates' Court on Wednesday.

He was sentenced to four years nine months in prison at Wolverhampton Crown Court today.

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