He conned his buyers out of more than £9,000
Ticket fraudster, Hussayn Hirani has been jailed for two years and 11 months, after he made thousands of pounds, selling football tickets, he did not have, on Twitter.
The offences were committed during August 2016 and October 2017, when Hirani, stole images of real football tickets, posted by others on social media and advertised them for sale online.
Once sold, victims would have to make a payment to bank accounts belonging to associates and friends of the fraudster, and the cash would then be withdrawn later and handed back to Hirani.
However, no tickets were sent to the buyers and Hirani was charged with three counts of fraud by false representation, although an extended investigation was carried out by the Met’s Fraud and Linked Crime Online (FALCON) unit and Action Fraud and 26 further charges were made.
During the course of the investigation, detectives discovered that Hirani also sold fake Wimbledon and concert tickets. He conned his buyers out of more than £9,000 over the course of a 16-month-period.
On Thursday 1st March 2018, the 24-year-old of Colindale in London pleaded guilty to 28 counts of fraud by false representation at Harrow Crown Court.
The fraudster was handed a 25-month imprisonment for the offending between August 2016 and October 2017, however, he was previously convicted for the same offence in June 2016 and June 2017 and was given a suspended sentence on both occasions.
Her honourable Judge Dean reviewed Hirani’s previous conviction, and as a result, she handed him an additional 10 months sentence, giving him a total of 35 months imprisonment.
However, one charge of fraud by false representation was discontinued at court.
Detective Constable Paul Allgood from FALCON said:
“This was a lengthy and complex investigation, involving dozens of victims. Hirani betrayed the trust of all of these people and made a living out of lying. He arranged for the profit he made from these crimes to go into the bank accounts of his friends and associates in order to distance himself from the offending.”
“FALCON and Action Fraud worked in a close partnership to bring Hirani to justice. I would strongly discourage members of the public from allowing anyone to access or use their bank accounts. You should never disclose personal bank details unless for a legitimate purpose, to an authorised individual or organisation. I would also encourage the public to take extra care when purchasing goods through social media.”
According to the Action Fraud website look out for the following before buying tickets online:
- Check the contact details of the site you’re buying the tickets from. There should be a landline phone number and a full postal address. Avoid using the site if there is only a PO box address and mobile phone number, as it could be difficult to get in touch after you buy tickets. PO box addresses and mobile phone numbers are easy to change and difficult to trace.
- Before entering any payment details on a website, make sure the web address starts with https (the ‘s’ stands for secure). There should be That there is a locked padlock icon in the browser’s address bar.
- Is the vendor a member of Society of Ticket Agents and Retailers (STAR)? If they are, you’re buying from a company that has signed up to their strict governing standards. STAR also offers a service to help customers with outstanding complaints.
Advice on fraud can be found at www.met.police.uk/advice-and-information/fraud/personal-fraud or alternatively contact Action Fraud.