Stoke Newington man jailed for Lebanese Loop Tube card fraud scam

Shahbaz Khan

Shahbaz Khan - Credit: Archant

Sheraz Khan, 29, of Nether Street, Finchley, Feroz Khan, 31, of Tyndall Road, Leyton, Shahbaz Khan, 33, of Clissold Road, Stoke Newington, and Abdul Iqbal, 31, of Beachome Mews, Hertfordshire, were foiled following a British Transport Police (BTP) investigation.

Three brothers and their cousin who stole Tube passengers’ bank card details through a skimming device known as the Lebanese Loop have been jailed.

The group had placed a skimming device – also known as a Lebanese Loop - onto cash machines to prevent them from ejecting bank cards.

The men then loitered around the machines and offered to help the victim, watching them re-enter their PIN as they tried to get their card out.

When the victim left, they would remove the loop and card and withdraw cash from another ATM.

On October 8 2012 a 51-year-old man inserted his card into the cash machine at Hillingdon London Underground station, and when the card became stuck one of the Khans offered to stand by the machine while the victim spoke to station staff.

The group stole £984 from the victim’s account and went on to spend some of it on gambling and cigarettes.

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A week later on October 16 an off-duty police officer was approached by Sheraz Khan at the same underground station by the cash machine - but the officer noticed the device and removed it from the machine, leading Mr Khan to leave the station immediately.

CCTV dating from January showed the men loitering around other cash machines they had attached the device to in Belsize Park and Camden, and the men were subsequently arrested.

The men pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing and appeared at Blackfriars Crown Court on Monday April 15 for sentencing.

Sheraz Khan received 16 months after pleading guilty to four counts of possessing an article for use in fraud, Feroz Khan was sentenced to 20 months after pleading guilty to three counts of possessing an article for use in fraud, Shahbaz Khan was sentenced to 12 months after pleading guilty to two counts of possessing an article for use in fraud and Abdul Iqbal was sentenced to 12 months in prison after pleading guilty to three counts of possessing an article for use in fraud.

Investigating officer PC Mark Pink, warned passengers to beware, because the BTP had discovered and removed many of the same devices from other underground stations.

“Remember to check cash and ticket machines for anything unusual, always shield your PIN with your other hand when typing and don’t use an ATM when people are loitering,” he said.