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'The fixer' no more: Fraudster's scam to help drivers escape motoring convictions comes crashing down as 15 sentenced
25 Nov | 16:10

Syed Shahed Ahmed, 43, pocketed thousands of pounds through his scam which he ran in Sunderland

A fraudster who masterminded a sophisticated scam to help dishonest drivers escape motoring convictions has been jailed.

Syed Shahed Ahmed, known locally as ‘the fixer’, helped more than a dozen drivers across Sunderland and South Tyneside avoid fines and points on their licence through his illicit operation.

Ahmed, 43, pocketed thousands of pounds as part of the scam which saw him promise drivers who had been caught speeding or jumping red lights that he could make their points and fines disappear.

The devious crook would then fill out penalty notices on behalf of drivers, using false details and a string of addresses across Sunderland to disguise his criminality.

Following a three-year investigation, officers laid bare the scale of the illegal operation which involved 15 defendants. Ahmed and the drivers who attempted to avoid their respective punishments were all charged and put before the courts.

Ahmed, of Vale Street, Sunderland, admitted 16 counts of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice as well as money laundering in relation to the distribution of the funds he had accrued.

Today (Monday) he was jailed for three years and six months following a hearing at Newcastle Crown Court.

PC Fiona Wood, of Northumbria Police’s Camera Enforcement Unit, said: “Syed Shahed Ahmed ran a large-scale operation in the heart of our community but today it has come crashing down around him.

“Ahmed showed a total disregard for the law and thought he was too clever to be caught. He appeared to thrive from his criminality and reputation within his circles as ‘the fixer’. He clearly felt he was above the law.

“However, he and all those who knowingly handed over their penalty notices have now been rightly punished for their disingenuous and unlawful actions.

“As part of this investigation, with support from Operation Dragoon, we trawled through hundreds of hours of CCTV footage and followed an endless document trail to map out this complex web of criminality.

“Most speeding offences result in an offer to attend a speed awareness course or three penalty points and a fine. However, by allowing Ahmed to provide police with false information on their behalf, the defendants have now received a far greater punishment.”

The court heard seven notices of intended prosecutions were delivered to an address associated with Ahmed on Leamington Street between October 2015 and June 2016.

But with the property empty and Ahmed seemingly uncontactable, officers began to look deeper into the discrepancies – and found two other addresses that he was also using as part of the conspiracy.

Now, following a three-year investigation, 15 individuals have been convicted. They are:

  • Syed Shahed Ahmed, 43, of Vale Street, Sunderland, jailed for three years and six months after pleading guilty to 16 counts of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and a further charge of money laundering.
  • Afsar Ali, 27, of Otto Terrace, Sunderland, handed eight-month sentence suspended for 12 months and 240 hours unpaid work after being found guilty by a jury of two counts of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.
  • Oliur Chowdhury, 29, of Blenheim Walk, South Shields, handed eight-month sentence suspended for 12 months and 240 hours unpaid work after admitting conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.
  • Saeed Laskar, 24, of Palmerston Street, South Shields, sentenced to six months suspended for 12 months and 220 hours unpaid work after being found guilty by a jury of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.
  • Rebecca Lambert, 31, of Cambridge Road, Sunderland, admitted conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and received four-month sentence suspended for 12 months and 100 hours unpaid work.
  • Stefan Lambert, 29, of Polworth Square, Sunderland, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and was handed four-month sentence suspended for 12 months and 180 hours unpaid work.
  • Abdul Shohid, 62, of Ranson Street, Sunderland, found guilty by a jury of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and sentenced to five months suspended for 12 months and 200 hours unpaid work.
  • Hammad Ahmed, 24, of Thornhill Terrace, Sunderland, admitted conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and received three month sentence suspended for 12 months and 150 hours unpaid work.
  • Syed Sabir Ahmed, 35, of General Graham Street, Sunderland, handed five-month sentence suspended for 12 months and 150 hours unpaid work after pleading guilty to conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.
  • Mohammad Sharif, 50, of Brunton Terrace, Sunderland, sentenced to four months suspended for 12 months and 180 hours unpaid work after admitting conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.
  • Abdul Amin, 50, of Abbotsford Grove, Sunderland, handed four-month sentence suspended for 12 months and 180 hours unpaid work after pleading guilty to conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.
  • Murshad Miah, 37, of Mainsforth Terrace West, Sunderland, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and received four-month sentence suspended for 12 months and 180 hours unpaid work.
  • Shayer Miah, 46, of Otto Terrace, Sunderland, admitted conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and was sentenced to four months suspended for 12 months and 18 hours unpaid work.
  • Syed Suber Ahmed, 57, of Otto Terrace, Sunderland, handed 28-day curfew after pleading guilty to conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.
  • Syed Nasir Ahmed, 34, of Otto Terrace, Sunderland, admitted conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and received four-month sentence suspended for 12 months and 180 hours unpaid work.

Following today’s sentencing, PC Wood added: “I hope this case sends out a strong message to the community - this type of criminality will not be tolerated, we will catch perpetrators and anyone involved will be made to face the consequences.”

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